Casting about for a reason
I sink a plumb line into the firmament
My wings have been cut
But still I build my edifice
In it there will be a menagerie
And a fountain
Exotic birds, an aviary
And a throne room
I am the lord of this, my castle
Yet the animals do not obey my commands
Sinking in flotsam, the crocodile eyes me
Even though I shot him
In the tail
On my throne I command the birds
To sing me
Pop songs
But they persist in their insolence
Of song bird revels
The snake tells me
I must wish away the animals
And build a kingdom of men
If I desire
But instead
I open the cages
And sit in the fountain
A river raft passes
I hail them
Begging a crust of bread
My stores long exhausted
I live on air and sand now
And sweet water
In my secret heart I know
I could rejoin the kingdoms of men
I know not why I resist
Except I am too proud to obey
Perhaps that’s it
As I wander in the desert
I hear the Lord’s voice
But it does not match up
With the beating of my heart
In time I wonder
How I came to this flooded chamber
But my thirst is great
And I do not trouble myself about it
I grew an orchard once
At first the trees produced thistles
But I watered each with drops
Of my own blood
And thereafter there was fruit
In my orchard there were rats and mice
I taught them to dance
And set snares
For the monkeys who stole my fruit
The fruit did not provide protein
I roasted the monkeys
The rats and mice remained loyal
Thus did I conceive
That I might have a kingdom of animals
I was deceived
I should have known what was
The first few animals obeyed
Until they saw me kill a monkey
Thereafter the herbivores were obstinate
And the carnivores sought to be
My cronies
I had to cage them all
This was the beginning of the end
After the release
I made a brass leopard
To keep me company
It did not serve
After the flood, starving
I was caught stealing olives and oranges
I was whipped
Someone took pity on me and offered me room and board
For work
In my hunger I could not refuse
I had to obey
Or be exiled to the desert
Having lost my sovereignty
My mind began to dwindle away
As I was but a cog
In an industrial machine
But still I existed
I lost my feet and hands to obedience
But still I existed
I lost my eyes and ears to silence
But still I existed
What little conscience I had shrank away
But still I existed
My heart became stony
But still I existed
But still I existed
Soon I was like a golem
I did not think of my actions, I just did
I did not see their fruits, I just did
I did not think whether my enslavement was right
I did not feel, I just did
A little piece of my mind remained
When I was going to sleep at night, I felt it
My dreams were inflamed, but I never remembered
I was a crust of mind
Drifting on a stream
Soon to become waterlogged, and sink
Oh, to be a mote in black oblivion
To have no thoughts
To be
At peace
One day I woke to find
I had a tail, and fur
The orchard had no place for monkeys
I was driven off
Free again
But in fear for my life
I remembered
Men were creatures to fear
A piece of me still hung on
Grimly determined
I went on my merry way
Part happy,
Part grim
The other monkeys threw shit at me
Perhaps remembering
When I had trapped, and eaten them
I became a monkey mind in truth
Almost forgetting my past personality
At the moment the change was complete
I was caught, and killed
And roasted


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