Dark Body

This entry is part 15 of 73 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Winter 2011-12


Dark-promised, soot-colored, life-size statue of the Nuestro Padre Nazareno— Clear sky, bright sun that stripes his rickety carriage, borne on the shoulders of hundreds of men. Carpenter, boat-builder, cop and cobbler; plumber, electrician out of work, not yet sober tuba-drinker; husband, overseas worker, skirt-chaser, wife-beater. They’ve all come to touch this visage of coal, this visage of charred ship lumber. Fire translates into scars on the body’s timber. Any piece of clothing will do to daub its flesh-like surfaces: torn t-shirt, scrap of cotton, burlap sack, polyester, old gym towel. They pull on ropes, conveying this likeness cloaked in saffron and red velvet. In the choked streets, see how urgent the desire to touch, be touched, be filled with fleeting grace. Some have fainted. Some have lost a finger, crushed a rib, a clavicle. For miracle, what does it matter that one might be trampled?


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

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