The Song of the Stone God

They raised so many statues of him
I have forgotten the face that is not granite
but skin
every crease and line that might imply
weakness was lost in translation
a beautiful portrait that will never age
though the man himself should wither away
what genius he once possessed long since lost to entropy,
all his strength faded; on his uniform, brass buttons which at one time shined.

He’s an exceptional person,
and one word from his mouth washes away
a thousand words from mine, like the great river
consumes the minor tributaries of its floodpath
and rushes on.

But I knew this man
for a prisoner within his own mind.
He called me often to his bedside
with earnest pleading
and whispered to me
horrifying tales of eyes always watching
from the darkness,
inhuman eyes that never blink.
Nailed accelerators and severed break lines
and cars that speed off ever faster into the night.

For reasons I could not divine, my presence brought him
some small measure of comfort
and I could not refuse my benefactor.
At the sight of his monument, I, too, am sure to be seen
taking a moment of respectful silence.

But the granite god before me
contains within
the confines of its own stone body
the whole of its deity.
This god of the psyche
spreads broad wings
over as many as
weigh it with their own need,
the weight of its authority
continually contending
against their
senses’
testimony.

From the countryside the song of the stone god rises
like the cricket song of the swamp. A thousand voices join as one,
each desperate for sleep, each
terrified of standing out,
each lying in wait
to seize
the first cricket
who stops singing.

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