Tuesday, October 4, 2016

“Catholic women do it better,”
Just ask any Baltimore taxi driver
About Loyola University girls …

                        “Every greater or better love
                        Tries to knock us off.
Back into la prima nocta.
                        Like la prima nocta.”

By the Seine
    below the Pont Marie
    Notre Dame totters
 on her two teetering toes
            or something like this

for in those moments it’s easy
    to skip or swap a letter or
rank and become dyslexic,
    pagan or barbaric
or even—passion tongue-tied,

the Pont Marie is strung
    & drunk all the way through,
and if Notre Dame is a lady,
    she is so darkly and flipped

like a heron amidst the stream
    which she searches and beaks
for the one fish on two long legs
and magic of gold and her triple wish.

    That love is tantrum and dream,
timber in kindling, temper and humor
    and pique and emptiness trim
and mantra and mudra—behind which,
    instead of Kali, gorgeous Medusa blinks.

It‘s good that right in the beginning
   every cathedral offers a bird cooling bath
and only then a pulpit for, as we know,
   for man and woman ever to sin,
   the word had to be first,

and the first ever conversation,
    back-and-forth talk, was between
    curious Eve and the bellicose
belly and bell & crawler and creep
    whose name makes the sound
and air shudder, quiver and sing.

    Or is it because there is always
a cat, a holistic cat, buried or meant
in the word catholic from which sideways
    we spin and slip and nap and fall asleep
    till all in everything rings, rinses and fits?

And if there is such a cat free
    to finish and turn, then
there must be an Egyptian beau
down inside any such belle or fan
    should you just bother to scratch,

the very one whose lines once made
   stone by the Nile come alive
in those statues divinely smooth
    and yet ready and calm
    as she arches and aches
like Notre Dame’s dam
or the Pont Marie?
    Like Heavenly Nut
showing us the shower of stars
and beauty’s finish, surface and end
    —beauty’s genesis text
    and prima nocta and grazing grace

as love drums her dreams
    into the ears by which we stalk
the earth, the air and waves
    and even heavens—
    spiced, despoiled and dented
by women and heartthrobs of Hell.

    And still I would maintain,
as Notre Dame tumbles,
    trembles and streams,
and so does the Seine,
    though never minding a bit
who is the angel and which is the imp,
    each of them raises her golden knees.

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