1607 c/o James Chapman

1607, Wales.

“The cause of the flood remains disputed, insofar as contemporary explanations blamed God.”

     The names for love dissolved the world.

     Lord, the names for love dissolved you. If you only could have loved us. We offered ourselves.

     But when we forgave your wrath, we were dying in you.

     When we trembled, we were dancing away from you.

     When we dared not speak your name, we were dreaming of love’s body.

     When you built heaven and hell, and suspended us between them, you taught us hovering.

     When you created time and shaped its edge into a sword, you taught us hovering.

     We hovered in each other’s arms, stopping time.

     You can’t defeat us. You’re a name, a story, a limit. We won’t be limited.

     You can’t scare us into obeying. Obedience is never love. We’ll only love, we will only love.

     You made an earth with creatures desperate to love. You made us more powerful than yourself. Lord, we’ll kill you if you try to keep us from touching.

     I love him.

     You tried to destroy him. It took a flood. Yes he’s drowned now.

     You’ve robbed his soft skin to cover your footstool. I can’t stop your vile hand from reaching into flood and sewage, stealing beauty. But my love will go to my husband. To him, not to the night thief.

     Because you’re wrong. Death is not beauty. If you throw me into the black sky, and revolve me around a red star for a million years, so I start to feel the curve of eternity, I’ll still dream of the skin behind my beloved’s ear.

     You plucked his eyes, but I’ve seen into them. If I have a soul, it’s made of his eyes.

     You float in the dark, bitter, and boast of your infinitude. Leave us, we’re too small to give you love. Love between equals, love as love is.

     You create eyes like my husband’s so you can threaten to destroy them. You want us scared of you. You demand we love you, lest you take your gifts back.

     You’ve only taught us to do without you. His eyes are eternal.

     I hate you, they are eternal, you don’t exist.

     His eyes are God. His face is God, not you. I worship his body, not yours. I praise his voice. His hair tangles your universe. His breath swamps your starlight. His voice outwarms your sun.

     In my life he was a flash of light, but I see him. His smile’s vanished but I feel it throughout me.

     My fingers and feet are at the two ends of eternity, quivering in his kiss. No other creation exists. He’s our universe, I’m our creation. He’s the sky, I’m the earth. He holds me everyplace, he floats me in his airy hands.

     There’s no room here for your flood. We’re busy. Don’t stand in our light. You didn’t create this light.

     I tell you all this and you’re silent. Rushing waters. Your filthy silence.