Issue 101, Winter 1986
As long as I struggle to float above the ground
and fail, there is reason for this poetry.
On the stone back of the Ludovici throne, Venus
is rising from the water. Her face and arms
are raised, and two women trained in the ways
of the world help her rise, covering her
nakedness with a cloth at the same time.
If this continues, she, goddess of beauty
and love will have accomplished the earth
where I stand. She from water to land,
me from earth to air as if I had a soul.
It is the rising I love, in no matter what
element, to the one above. As I ascend, helped
by prayers and not by women, I say in all my
sexual glamor, see my body bathed in light and air.
See me rise like a flame, like the sun, moon,
stars, birds, wind. In light. In dark.
But I never achieve it. I get down on my knees
this grey April to see if open crocuses have a smell.
I must live in the suffering and desire of what
rises and falls. The terrible blind grinding
of gears against our bodies and lives.