POETRY: On The Feast Of Saint John The Evangelist by David Brendan Hopes
The solstice moon rides within a ring of ice
gleaming blue silver, blood silver, silver, mist silver.
The snow is blue; cobalt silver on the moon-struck mountain.
In the corner of the porch roof, against the moon,
a spider spins a warped web. She is dazed with cold. Hunger.
She stops. She starts again, spinning badly,
past her time, utterly hopeless and beyond help.
I cannot decide if this is beautiful or horrible.
Either way, it cannot be looked at very long.
The ice halo spreads and pales, swallowing the sky.
In a dream the spider came down off the moonlit
porch, to my bedside. I tried to explain it to her.
This is the world. Many spirits of many kinds dwell in it
and do not permit it to be pure. What called you?
Tell me what you hungered for. There was nothing alive
in the snowfields. Nothing to eat.
Was it the beauty of the moon, the blue mouth of the ices,
singing? The saints sing to themselves.
The saints eat their own hearts,
then cannot show us how it’s done.
In the dream neither of us was afraid.
In the dream I cupped my hand and carried her.
In the dream she rode out to tell it to the frozen moon.
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