Treasure Island

Charles Wax


Being At One Time Defeated


I descended into the pit with Caligula
while my hero the Dalai Lama
serenely watched men
sawn in half
their soft flesh
bubbling blood into the air.
And I understood nothing.
Lonely
and longing for
his words:
Goodness inherent
in every heart
he said that again and again
like stars
like wind
a million hours of meditation
so he knew
his breath impregnable
as chunks of diamond
yet I could not shift
from the immense crater of
Caligula’s perversity—
slaughter from a jiggling
tongue
devouring my beloved
teacher.

Submitted: Wednesday, February 18, 2009

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