History on her rosy northern skin
had traced with pain the crossed, fine
lines of vain attempts and vanished
tears, of long endured days and years and deaths
that marked her like a line of graves
waiting for the art within her charge.
Through too few years she bore the charge
of creation; from her fragile bones and skin,
and from her mingling with that grave
poetic man, the mixture of her own fine
poet’s blood with mud made life from death
and dreams that from her heart would vanish
only as the storied, vanished
bird that falls beneath the charge
of purifying fire and defies its death
to leave the self and rise within new skin,
all loss and pain ground down to fine
thin ash that blows across the useless grave.
With art unconquered by the grave
attained, she spins the words of never vanished
heart; beyond the veil of night on strong, fine
winds, she sends her poet’s charge:
Be fire that frees these words of their fine skin
and burns them to the ashes of a death
that is a rising up, the death of death.
With spirit breath, she mocks the wished-for grave,
and putting on a pure new feathered skin,
soars forth upon the wings of her vanished,
but unvanquished heart, from which the charge
of beating with too fine
a beat – hoping with too fine
a hope to find the pall of death
no longer is her calling or her charge.
Her spirit heart takes flight beyond the grave,
bearing through the cast of this dark night the vanished
hopes and dreams of verse and skin,
delivering the poet’s charge beyond the grave,
to mingle with us in a living fire and vanish
from her death into this fine new skin.