Onsen

I sink and breathe winter
a noseful of glacier air
It freezes a path through to my lungs

It settles
then boils in the heat of my blood
the heat of the onsen
A broiling claw grips my chest

I exhale
White steam rises from white snow
beneath the white crescent moon
the eye of an unnamed god

I drift
As if sitting on an ark
The ship’s wheel spinning like a storm
spinning inside my head

I can see your outline against the rocks
You are naked
and though separated by a wall
we are closer than we have ever been,

here,
in this heat, in this steam,
lost,
where boundaries lose all meaning

Pain

Crimson leaves, a mockingbird.
The silent trail of afterwords.
We crossed paths at the bridge of pain.
There we parted, nothing gained.
Across, the road, with footsteps worn,
told tales of countless winters won.
But the I of then had failed to see
the truth of shadows surrounding me.

And so I came to the valley’s edge,
not one the wiser, filled with rage
for the path before me was moot.
The bridge’s poles uproot.
Down the cliff, all I found
was a sea of cloudy misty mounds.

Right there, I built a hut, for one
and waited, for the setting sun.
But neither rust, nor rabble, came to break
that shining, silver, empty, lake.
Along the edge, all day, I paced.
All day, everyday, my heart I braced.
And in more than just a million years
a bell’s chime happened to reach my ears.

I took a step. I fell through.
The darkness held me, close and true.
Warm, like blood I had rejected.
Why had I  felt so dejected?
I am you. You, I am.
Not a foe. But a friend.