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Poetry

Qui diceris Paraclitus
(O Comforter, to Thee we cry)
__________—“Veni, Creator Spiritus”

Come
at me, Comforter. I strain
toward your inrushing arrow as it halves

then halves then halves
the distance that severs us.
Till kingdom

comes its Zeno-arrow lurches
in time lapse, not
still where it was, not yet in that place where it is not.

†| |†

Come to me, Paraclitus, across
the trillions of synaptic clefts in the brain, re-
uptake

the molecules of my consoling:
norepinephrine, dopamine, cast
as charred

offerings into the voltaic
gap between us. Synapse: apse. Semi-domed
recessive altars, almost touching. Come, Untouchable, from the other side.

†| |†

Come, Comforter, but noli
me tangere, stay
on the dendrite’s side of that infinit-

esimal fissure between
herenow and Kingdom Come, like the cleft
where Moses cowered
in the rock while the cleaving
obliterative glory of the Lord
passed him by….

†| |†

There’s a hole in us, says Pascal, in the shape of God.
It can only be refilled by what’s infinite, what’s
hole-shaped itself and long-torn-away.

It bears the empty print and trace of bliss.
I run my fingers over and over
my temples, feeling

under skull-ridges for the brain
riddled with the rifts
cleft there as Thee.

†| |†

The Lord spake unto Moses face to face,
as a man speaketh unto his friend. Nine
verses later, in Exodus: And the Lord said,

Thou canst not see my face:
for there shall no man see me, and live. Come, Uncomforter.
Some prayer ferries over the cerebrospinal fluid

(nearer-my-god, nearer) zeroing
in
on Your ever-called-for unarrival.


The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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