The Zombie, Rejected By His Human Lover, Responds

By | 1 April 2010

– for Megan Thoma
 

I'm writing this with my finger,
dipped in the pulp
of my own clotting blood
on the concrete
wall of a parking garage.

The air was a blurry
headache the night
I first saw you,
skin aglow like starlight
on a sidewalk,
some candle
I lack irradiating
the stained-glass sea
in your eyes.

I don't remember what bite
or voodoo narrowed
me to this undying season
of wanting. I only
know I'm hunger. I'd swallow
myself if I could.
I can feel myself
decomposing. I shake,
and shake.

I'm an orchestra of lurches,
a spell of falling,
I couldn't help but tilt
toward you, but what amazed
my wilting mind
was that you saw
the telltale angle
of my stumble,
heard the primal
deep of my smeared
excuse for language.
You knew what
I was and took
me home anyway.
In this I might be no
different than any man.

Here is something no
other human knows:
every night in the sting
of cool right before dawn
we gather, all over,
a rotting congregation.
Some compass
in us inclines
our faces toward Pluto,
and we will turn
toward it as one
and hum a graveled,
shivering hymn.
It has no words.

Last night I shuffled
not to the pallid
rooftop where we gather
but wavered
outside your window
as you slept and sang,
not to the underworld,
but to you. I'm
in orbit around something
new. I'm now something
other than what my body
demands of me. Sweet,
I love you for more
than your brain.
What other man
has ever said that?

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