KING LEAR ON THE HEATH
The swarms are moving in. They pass
Through our breath and fog the glass of days
Completely. If they have bones, they use
Them to make music, a curious dry, music,
The sound of grasshopper wings in a still field.
We begin to write the opera they contain.
“I am more alive that you.”, wail the flutes,
Lugging their way through storms and broken
Reed to light upon the quick scarves of the
Tongue and burst into colorful flame, capes
Unfurled, as if they were not paying attention
To how the story might go. They eat heroes
And heroines alike, spitting out the small bits,
Extinct and irrelevant but always catching us,
Making us regret their actions, passing us
With thick arms and buckets filled with fascinating
Treasures from the deepest parts of the sea.
Finally we are asked to walk among them,
Suspend belief, give ourselves over to their
Crackling displays that take language out
Of the senses violently, pulling our hair
To direct us in the direction they will have us
Go. We become weary meeting other people.
Looking for the light in their eyes that allows
Us to understand they have seen what we
Have seen, heard what they have heard.
From on high we can watch the doors of perception
Swing open and closed, millenniums of behavior,
Always similar to our own but finally crouching
Behind one another, As flies to wanton boys,
Are we to the gods. They kill us for their sport.
We will leave the room quickly, dress without
Caring, only to be warm, find our way into the snow.
We will get into our automobiles, humming to ourselves
To keep some sanity and drive off into music finally
Done with it, lucky to be alive.