8 Jun 2009

Junkie -- PA Pilgrim

You made needlework an art
late into the night
drilling wrought iron lattice work
your arms became heavy
still you persisted
it was religion you said
you could not desert your god
his need was yours
(so very great)
you worked in gold
to make a tawdry thing
of cotton wool and blood
and punctured skin.

Some said you were a poet
(you claimed no such skill)
others a showman
with your body as a prop
(tax deductible) but you
were wiser and worked your miracles in miniature
and with each illumination
your options got less
until finally the tapestry was finished
and there was music in the air
and under earth
the sky was lead
each star a pin-
prick of light.

Hercules was not your god
(some other you alone knew
for sure his name)
he left you on that night
and the morning found you dead
at your devotions.

Source: Pilgrim , PA 1972, ‘Junkie’, Poetry Australia 45, South Head Press, Port Melbourne, p. 16.

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