Recoil Child

Written by: Christopher Mason

Recoil child
from the light
that burns all rivers dry
though some might seek
to persuade you
to endure its heat
I say
retreat beneath the rock
where thin roots cling
to the living dust
and creatures lie still
amidst bones
licked clean and sharp
for there
where life reveres
the silence 
and the shadow that conceals
you will learn
to crawl and feed upon filth
as your flesh grows coarse and pale
and your eye more subtle
and your hand more savage
while those without wither
sustained by the frail conviction
their souls are nourished
through anguish
are purified
through their fierce contempt
for we who breathe the fetid vapors
which linger warm and close
to the fertile soil
forever singing their disgust
with voices shrill
for all who savor
the sweet stench of loss and birth
convinced in their condition
of violent fever
the seed is defiled
in drawing strength from the corpse
and the spirit contaminated 
by blood or color
but I who have discovered
cool and secret caverns
within which to rest and feast
know that truth flows capricious
over stone in dark places
and grace rises
green from the earth’s wetness
and I declare
paradise is sacrificed through deprivation
and gained of a moment
through love