February 1, 2013

Beyond the Blacksmith


Visions replay
In the theatre of my mind
Haunted by history
Karma's thermal wheel
Spinning in exasperation
Leaving faint traces of another age
To linger behind my sleeping eyes
Eight reincarnations
The joy of eight births
Sorrow for eight deaths
Spanning time
To touch me now

The night before last
I dreamt my distant past
Beyond the realm of this existence
Eight lives ago:

.........................I was a blacksmith
..................A burdensome trade
.............................Stoking brutal fires
..........................Horseshoes and hot bricks
.................Smoke and cinders swirling
.............The aura of molten iron
.....................Hammer and anvil in unison
...................................Lilting a metallic duet
.......................Sparks dancing, magenta lightning
.......Crashing down on a turbulent lake of acid
.................Steaming and bubbling; guttural strength
.........................Sweat flowing in copious rivers
................................Each afternoon
....................Until the fatigued sun retired
..................................And I would come alive 

.........Stalking the cobblestones
..........................Vacant alleyways
................................A mendicant rogue
......................Dim report of covert footfalls
...........................................Chimerical, shady
.................................A nocturnal animal
...........................Preying on unwary strangers
.........................................Passers-by
............................................Drunkards and slatterns
.....................My sacred hammer always tucked
..................................Beneath my belt safely
.............................Burnished rawhide concealing
....................................The precious tool of my trade
......................And the instrument of my sickness
............By moonlight--
......This hammer would sing a different melody
...A lonely aria of death
The deep-throated voice of blood-soaked metal
......Piercing the cool night air
......................The harmony of soft flesh
.................................Disuniting from bone
....................................The percussive splintering
..........................................Of innocent skulls
...........................I conducted a magnificent concerto
..................In the gloom of the city
............A maestro with his trusted baton
...................Such beautiful dissonance
.....................The work of a born craftsman
.........................................................Uplifted
...............................................................Genius 

...............................Remorse
..................................Never penetrated
..............................My diabolical thoughts
........................................For the melancholy
.................................I had left behind
...................Utter exhilaration consumed me
.............Thrill of homicide
.......The morbid arousal
Of sinister deeds unsolved
......................Captivating me
.........................A thirst unquenchable
.............................................Clandestine 

..................I would drag
......The bodies of my victims
Back to the swollen bellows
............Of my belching furnace
.................For the cleansing conflagration
..............................................To render away
............................Any hint of my guilt
...................Absolving me
............Before the new day's sun
......................Could rise
...............................Upon suspicion


* * *

That night
I awoke
Soaked with sweat
Trembling
I sat up in bed
Pondering my nightmare
Bothered by dark questions:

........How much of the blacksmith is still in me?

........Am I a killer?

Karma's never-ending wheel
Spanning the centuries
Ever vigilant
Spiraling
Through countless reincarnations
Past visions
Invading my sleep
Bizarre realities
That have come and gone


Last evening
I watched another existence unfold
In the cinema of my dreams
From seven lives ago
Seven births
Seven deaths:

I was an earthworm...