#poem #poetry #amwriting divine comedy - canto 9

canto 9

as the rat chews my brain
my spirit rises to the light
streaming through the window barred
hovering high upon the wall
and I rise
rise in split souled curiosity
for though I know the simple truth
of my wished for torment
feeding rodents teeth

as lithe as water round reads
I rise
I leave the flesh of my soul
to be devoured with no regard
while my true self lifts to that window
gazes through the bars
to the meadow
and the trees
and the three sunned sky
but there I do not stop
for I fly

slip from my cell
and soar on easy beaten wings

there I see the town
it's white houses among trees
the river ambling carstone tinted
beneath the scutted sky
the sheep of the fielded
the scurrying people
and the afternoon idlers sipping coffee
the trout basking in the shade of the bank
and spot the ladybird
perpetually flying to an orphaned home

and there are my children
and there is my wife
at the unsettled grave
with posies of flowers
on their face they show the scar
of my confused departure

don't they know the joy
of which I have been
or understand the pain of which I suffer
and can they knot

I stop myself

for the pleasures of the self-obsessed pain
or the thrill of reunion
though fulsome in their comfort
do not stand in equal merit
to that true pleasure they possess
with each new breath
and each expelling
the wheeling seasons
or the sun warmed back

for they have that narrow path
from which slipped I
to a broader realm
and though I love each one to bursting
my place is not enticement

my candle gutters
and my phantom form
left within that cell
to the welcomed assault I bid come blithely

and I understand
why now
despite false pride
I come to watch divided

for the answer to my question is 'yes'
dead I am

it is no joke
and had I only held harder to the rope
I would not be in that hole
but whole
and one
with those I love

The Blue Book