I’ve had a couple hours of sleep since I posted this poem, and now I have problems with it. It’s been rewritten in the post that will follow this one shortly, but since none of the commenters on this one hated it, I’ll make it public again, perhaps as contrast to the new version which I feel closer to and think communicates better.
Heated to glowing liquid,
he forms himself
with proximate air —
sometimes artisan breath, loosed —
considering character and function
through moments damaged
by his errant filter.
He composes hymns that ring true in self images
aching from their own afflictions,
turning white-hot focused affection
toward the shiny things,
with haphazard awareness
of their seared skin and his creeping cold.
Then he shatters —
his pieces scattering,
glittering in intermittent light
as his objects struggle, each in our own time,
in varying states,
each one burned before we know
and living to tell,
each left holding a brittle, cooled shard,
none with a whole to understand
or fortify a future on bare feet.
Perhaps he is barest among us,
vacillating, again molten.
Pained reflection and splintered facts
alter his shape,
though it still favors the old,
beckoning her trust with a new hymn
in the markings and exhalations,
expectant prayers, for art’s sake
and a life lived in one piece.
May she continue to shine,
with rewarded belief in secret magic
despite the advantage of viewing her predecessor
burnt, shard in hand.
I’m not sure how I feel about this, even though I think it’s finished. As always, please don’t hesitate to be honest about your impressions. That sort of discussion might distract me from the subject, which was probably too fresh to explore this way. But I needed to write something about it (in public I guess since I’ve shared it here) and this is what came.