Saturday, August 1, 2009

Alison Eastley

The Dream Temple of Kos

The story of Hippocrates is shroudedin uncertainty
despite these facts.He trained as a physician
in the Dream Temple Of Kos.This was back
when Apolloand Panaceia watched Hippocrates
observe the sickand injured. He knew
his humours which, in Latin means moisture
although I doubthe laughed
until tears ran down his face.Hippocrates
was too busyblaming the weather
known as autumn depression where those inclined to drink
quickly became drunks.Hippocrates said a lot
about the cause and even today,nothing much has changed.


Her clothes are too messyto mention a trousseau
even though she's in a newhouse with a garden of
hydrangeas dropping leaves where thorny weeds
scratch her hands, draw fine red lines like a trail
that starts and ends too soon. It's not the same
when heis driving in the country late at night. When
he arrives, she acts like a superstitious bride where
distance means there is no need for a map.

Greenpoint Beach

At the windswept outpost cold waters crash against the
coastline. We scramble over rocks, collect starfishfrom
white sand sticking to our hands, the smell of salty
memories, our childhood lifted out of time and given to
space. I asked you if you knew I felt so close I was
incoherent trying to describe we are inseparable as the
waves at Greenpoint Beach

(Italics: Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters On Life.)

-all three previously published at SN Review

Name Drawing

The priests of Lupericus sacrificed some goats
and a dog dripping so much blood

it was impossible to tell if the howling
had anything to do with severing the carotid artery

or something more archaic, the overwhelming
frenzy of want, those women

who ran round the nearest hill so they'd be ready
for the feast of sweaty flesh

some say was to honor yet another faceless
goddess watching the avian presence

of ravens mating in February. How beautifully
black to nest while women were whipped

until a man would draw their name
from the lovers lottery of St. Valentine's Day.

The Story of a Hero

Gilgamesh is a hero - more beautiful, more courageous,
more terrifying than the rest of us.

A huluppa tree had been planted on the banks
of the Euphrates which is okay if you understand botany

and distant locations or can make sense of prehistoric
culture, those unique dress codes because Gilgamesh

wore animal skins which would have looked eccentric with
the flesh of the gods residing in his body. His face was like

the face of one long journey after another. It wasn't simple
like tripping or waiting for the next day where he could write

about his dreams even if they were unintelligible. Surely,
they had to mean something but all Gilgamesh would say

was we must treasure our dreams whatever the terror,
but he never mentioned what scared him or if he suffered

nightmares as a child or would wake in a clammy wet bed
which is understandable if his insides were full of gods lending

immortality's delusional wings otherwise his wife would never
have had to say I have to touch this man to wake him.

-both poems previously published at Plum Ruby Review

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