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Pierre Joris

(1946 / Strasbourg)

Altars of Light


If the light is the soul
then soul is what's
all around me.

It is you,
it is around you too,
it is you.

The darkness is inside me,
the opaqueness of organs folded
upon organs--

to make light in the house of
the body--
thus to bring the
outside in,
the impossible job.

And the only place to become
the skin
the border, the inbetween, where
dark meets light, where I meets
you.

In the house of world the
many darknesses are surrounded
by light.

To see the one, we need
the other / it cuts both ways

light on light is blind
dark on dark is blind

light through dark is not

dark through light is movement
dark through light becomes,
is becoming,
to move through
light is becoming,

is all
we can know.

Submitted: Monday, January 20, 2003

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