into the deluge

thrown into or carefully placed
to sink or swim you can’t
figure out whether to wade
or walk upon these waves
of mystery and missed fortune—
who can tell what flies
out the window and into
your brainwaves?  how do you
carry all this drowning in destiny?
you try wrapping it up
but it only brings you down

the monsters seem familiar
but where have you seen
those faces before and why
are there so many of you?  each
with its own refusal its own cuts
and rearrangements of the narrative
you have lost in the multitude
of channels and static that keeps
trying to tell you what
you don’t want to hear—all this
motion drains your energy

you wish you could become
the water instead
of being layered flat
over its rocking curves–
nearby you think  you can
see the desert, thirsty,
a voracious patch of fire
and land but you know
it will not welcome you it
will not open for a solid
form even an imagined one

again and again you look
for the part of you that will
hold all those hands, that will
gather the waiting cries into one
sound riding the waves until
they tire of the fruitless weight–
all these journeys into the continuous
restructuring of what is unknown–
turn around a voice repeats
inside each of your weary minds—
the corner is just around the bend

At earthweal this week Brendan has asked us to consider “our wild dark brains”.

24 thoughts on “into the deluge

  1. how do you
    carry all this drowning in destiny?

    Indeed, how???

    This is longer than many of your pieces, Kerfe – and you somehow packed every stanza full of amazing imagery and concepts. I am very duly impressed – I love it.


    Liked by 2 people

        1. Do you know where you’re going when you start something? At best, I only have a vague idea. Often nothing more than an impulse to make something and the materials at hand. Even when I had assigned work with restrictions, I was often surprised by the result.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve read it twice and will read it again and again. It takes a core sample and analyzes it with the finest instruments of intangible discernment. I love your accompanying collage as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I see the kitchen sink in there too, rinsing the veggies lost in the whirl. A mind trying to take in everything now happening at once is surely in peril, and this captures perfectly the vertigo of a mind adrift in its storm.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I keep coming back to read this one, there are so many intriguing lines (the last a classic). The penultimate stanza seems to perfectly capture the phenomenon of resonating fiercely with a poem without fully grasping why. You almost expect it not to be there when you return to it, but there it is, the same astonishing, unsettling Sphinx.

    Liked by 1 person

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