Saturday, February 19, 2005


by Zinta Aistars

Even the memories
finally turned
to a fine chalky dust
on my fingertips, prints
left on a shirt sleeve,
translucent whorls, patterns
smudged on a window pane,
illuminated at dusk
like a hundred thousand
loose dreams
at morning light.

But the heart
is a restless beast,
hungry and wandering
its own stony path,
resurrecting at will,
diagramming histories
into unfolded palms,
entangled with lifelines.
This you will remember.
This will color your days.
This will bruise your nights.
This will grab your heart
like a fist, and squeeze,
just when you thought yourself


Hello, you.
Beast of a heart, yes, you.

We match appetites,
seated across a table,
my flushed face to your fisted
challenge, palm to palm,
muscles knotted for battle,
my lifeline to your scars,
armwrestling my future
out of your bloodied past.
Pound you back into dust.
From dust you rose,
into dust you shall be
pummeled, vanquished, jammed,
wrenched, disjointed, adjusted,

I have my fugitive dreams
to rescue.

Full moon rising - and my blood sings.
Flare of lightning, storm,
air vibrating with crackle
and sting of electricity,
tangle of wind
in whipping limbs,
pebbling of rain.
Fallen trees like road signs
pointing: this way -
horizon -
line to separate
my world
from yours.
The earth between
wet like birth,
and the edges

Grazed by a silken ache,
we dance in that moonlight.
We dance.
You sing, sweetly, softly,
silken-voiced, and I
listen, smiling.

The indigo sky is brilliant with stars.

Not this destiny, not this life,
not this convoluted path
I trip and travel, stumble,
trace and retrace,
and negotiate,
old enemies or old friends,
can never quite tell.
But I am too old to give in
any longer
to fear.

Polish the table,
clear the surface smooth,
stand back,
give me your hand.
I will wrestle you
for dust.


(Photo is from Riga, Latvia - one of my deeper lifelines.)

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