We hear of writing on the wall,
we know inscriptions on the soul,
but bodies too, a library –
both dress and presentation style.
Then vellum may be our own skin,
not dried up hide, beasts of the field,
but open frame, capillaries,
a canvassed proposition, claim,
flesh declarations, loyalties –
the ink blood flow, that page tattoo.
Some partners, now blurred memories,
those knights of revels, every port,
knuckled hate, love, other hand,
raised fist, high five or bicep script –
ancestral patterns on their trunks,
own tree of life for all to see.
Cross my palms with gold, she said,
and I’ll reveal what lies ahead.
But I know what the judgement is,
for palms were laid, before a cross;
then, body markings, sorry tale,
red letter day for arrogant.
Stephen Kingsnorth (Cambridge M.A., English & Religious Studies), retired to Wales from ministry in the Methodist Church with Parkinson’s Disease, has had some 300 pieces published by on-line poetry sites, printed journals and anthologies, most recently Academy of the Heart and Mind, The Parliament Literary Magazine, Runcible Spoon, Poetry Potion. https://poetrykingsnorth.wordpress.com/