One Must Dance Naked

Poem by

You wear your silence
as a black silk gown,
woven infinitesimal,
every thread a letter
of your lover’s name.
And your stillness is
a trembling at the touch
of those invisible lips.
The motion of that kiss
has no first cause,
but a stirring in the groin
of loss.

One must dance naked
as a flame without a wick
to entice the dawn.
It is not enough
to be quiet and empty,
because there is honey
in each cell of darkness
and the tomb is full of wine.

If your meditation
does not consume the moon,
the stars, the pit
in the swirl of yearning
with a tongue of fire that
tastes the subtle, ruthless,
delicate blade of love
between heartbeats,
then you are not singing
from the center
of your desolation.

You are just being quiet
and empty,
which is not enough.
You are still waiting
for a God to say,
“Let there be light.”

You must burn off
all these veils
and dance naked
in the moment before
you were born.

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