(1957 / Savannah, Georgia, United States)

The Nomad's Vision: Ode to a Skylark Dressed in Black

I see your wings are made
of many kingdoms,
nations, and stories
oh glowing bird of midnight love,
lovely lyricist
of daybreak and nightjoy.
My knees were two
bleeding bones
painting pain
upon desert stone
when your shadow
pulled the sun
beneath its tongue
of bold dark miracles
and a wave of melodies
scented with ash and rose
covered my head
with visions bright
and wondrous.
Air like thorns
shredded my lungs
and showered my blood
with sugared rain falling
from the whistling cloud
of your wine-sweet soul.

I was on bended
broken bleeding knees
when a Spiritman
dressed in rainbows
came towards me
as if dancing, as if crying,
as if not-fully-born,
he pulled me to my feet
then waved one immense black hand
and scattered my senses like dice—
there appeared upon the desert
an entire city
of pearl-covered domes
flashing knowledge and celebration—
he waved his hand a second time
and a boulevard
jeweled with pyramids
stood goldenbronze
beneath your floating shadow.
In the splendid lines
and circles
of that gleaming city
I witnessed my soul
flying among faces
from yesterday and tomorrow,
one calling himself Joseph,
another saying Arabi,
one calling herself Sheba
and another singing Thou-and-I art-One.
And I looked at the Spiritman
to ask what these things meant,
both of his eyes
were filled with your voice
rolling like drums
through my chest,
he spoke
through the lifting of his hands,
each time they rose
a new city breathed in light
and an ancient country
fell to its grave,
I heard no shame
in his song
as he removed his robe
and covered my ignorance,
his fingers traced
"you are loved"
upon my lips
and I walk now
as I saw him walk
partly stumbling/dancing

Lord so drunk
beneath the black fire
of your wings chanting and rising,
my brain staring at the sun
living like a king
inside the beat
of your sweet majestic flight.

by Aberjhani

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