By Ken Meisel
it was leaping just like a small black bird through
the white petals, but it wasn’t a bird either, but maybe an angel being,
it was showing me that love is play – & that it is as soft as two
small feet that don’t touch anything at all when they land,
except maybe the light most glad of all, which is
which is love’s business, the bird said. & then I saw it
thud on a collapsed apparel of white blossoms
they were suddenly bruised, turned yellow, even rotting,
love is the light most glad of all that receives the wound & that gives
new life & light to it, too,
the bird said to me, so it can be healed & so that it can be delighted.
& it – the angel being – picked up the wounded, yellowed, injured petal
in its beak & then it flew away with the petal, through the infernal sky
& through the corridor of all the mirrors, until all I could see
was where everything physical fails, is completely lost
in sunlight, in the tormented of array of bleached clouds,
which is memory, forgetting itself & dropping into the coma.
& sacred memory is what awakens in the petals,
in one another too, whenever we give life to love.
Ken Meisel is a poet and psychotherapist, a 2012 Kresge Arts Literary Fellow, a Pushcart Prize nominee and the author of eight books of poetry. His most recent books are: Our Common Souls: New & Selected Poems of Detroit (Blue Horse Press: 2020) and Mortal Lullabies (FutureCycle Press: 2018). His new book, Studies Inside the Consent of a Distance, was published in 2022 by Kelsay Books. Meisel has recent work in Concho River Review, I-70 Review, San Pedro River Review, Crab Creek Review and Rabid Oak.