of madness and dream

January 7, 2020

I have no right to call myself one who knows. I was one who seeks, and I still am, but I no longer seek in the stars or in books; I’m beginning to hear the teachings of my blood pulsing within me. My story isn’t pleasant, it’s not sweet and harmonious like the invented stories; it tastes of folly and bewilderment, of madness and dream, like the life of all people who no longer want to lie to themselves.

Hermann Hesse
Demian. The story of Emil Sinclair’s youth

Desire

September 24, 2019

in my dreams
I hold my lovers
next to me all at once
and ask them

what was it I desired?

my hands are full
of their heads
like bunches of cut roses
blond hair, brown hair, red, black,
their eyes are pools of bewilderment
staring up at me
from the bouquet

what was it I desired?
I ask again

was it your bodies?
did I hope by draping
your flesh over me
I could escape
boredom
loneliness
gray hairs shooting
towards me
from the future
like thin arrows?
did I think I could escape,
by taking your breath
into my mouth,
did I think I could escape
the responsibility
of breathing?

what did I desire in you?

sex
knowledge?
power?
love?

did I expect the clouds to
crack
and blue moths to fly out of the stars?
did I expect a voice
to call to me
saying
“Here at last is the answer.”

what
I yell at them
shaking my lovers
what did I desire in you?

their ears fall off like petals
they shed their faces
in a pile at my feet
their bewildered eyes
pucker and close
centres of fallen flowers

the last face
floats down
circling in the darkness
at my feet

what did I desire in you? I whisper

the stems of their bodies
dry in my hands

Mary Mackey