Great Rite


you came, shining smiles

into the murky pond

where I resided too long.

My fingers sodden sponges,

minnows feasting on my ankles

when in dreams you came


and left me here

to work my way out

alone, slip myself

from ooze, seething

in booze, slip away from a world

I created—fish cold


and toward a new brighter

sun, toward



Your leonine claws

remind me now of my own animal

flesh, warm blood dancing

under a surface

so long forgotten—


breathing, breathing through

gills, a nitrous

birth, Neptunian

melancholera rising, rises

from the water,


I enter then

your fire.