(M’s Birthday Poem- v2)

This is our tree-house.
It asks nothing of us.

When i first saw her
i was enchanted.
My heart sang that night–
there was communion, there was community.

As we grew closer, her depth drew me in,
both strange and beautiful,
i fell.

At first the fear was too strong,
the mystery too dark,
the exotic too alien.

So i kicked her away, once, then again, and yet again…

But she was infinitely patient.

And now i find…

I want to crawl inside her,
like a seed,
that sprouts roots inside her womb and branches out her heart
to enfold the world,
to embrace the local and the lonely;
To bare our one soul
to whatever rays of sunlight find their way
to our green, green cells.
And like chlorophyll transform that warmth,
transform that light,
transform the shit,
the decay,
the death,
in which we are rooted…

And like the branch that lengthens,
constantly reaches out,
i want to find that which isn’t me–
but in fact just may be me,
and in fact is me…?

And the strange and new become comfortable and home,
and what’s mine is yours and what’s yours is mine…

Our tree-house is equal parts darkness and light,
with a seedy underbelly dragging itself across mud & muck,
and a shimmering pearly-white pate shining brightly above the treetops.

And like our branches reaching up and away,
our roots, too, reach down and out.
They get dirty, get mean, get raunchy;
Squeezin’ that slime ‘tween their toes,
Grindin’ up stones;
Suckling sweet sustenance at the breast of the earth.

Out at one end of our tree-house
bubbles a cool pond–
spring-nourished, waterfall-fed,
nestled comfortably in a clearing
‘twixt our tree and a cliff.
And in the refreshing depths we sleep
and dream of golden-scaled mermen
and -women of silky sensuality carving curves inside curves,
while mer-children splash & play in the shallows,
and yellow-white butterflies dodge and dart
‘twixt the glinting droplets and rays.

At another end, a clearing,
where local two-leggeds lean
toward their thumping boxes,
then lean away,
lean toward,
and lean away,
in a twisting, writhing series of sumptuous thumps.
And others twist and writhe toward the sounds,
away and toward,
toward and away,
arms flinging, hands pushing,
at each other but not on.
And around a crackling fire they chant
and sing, and make joyful noises
at the fullest hours of night,
howling at the moon, lifting their hearts,
falling and flailing, twisting and turning,
until first light arrives,
and the noises of the day finally overtake their tired songs.

This is our tree-house,
situated softly in the center of the place where we are.
The tree asks nothing of us.

But we see.
We feel its syrupy veins,
and smell its sweet sap,
and slumber to the rocking
of its branches,
creaking in the night wind.

This is our tree-house,
which we have grown–
ourselves we have grown
this long and strong creature
with its reach beyond that of either of our own.

This is our tree-house.
It asks nothing of us.

— for M, 27 Sept, 2003

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