in oranjezicht

what makes me lucky is
i know what’s wrong with me.

imagine being in the dark about all that?
but i can lie in a hospital

ten thousand miles from home
and spend the whole time thinking

how nice it would be
if we were in richmond sometime

and our eyes met and we
fell there in love:

all gelatine summertime and skin
and skin—years in the making,

let me tell you—and you knowing
so much.

i really was in the hospital yesterday—
but you see how they misdiagnosed me;

they thought something was wrong with my body
but it’s much worse than that

my body is lame with fantasies;
ravaged by unreality.

it would rather see the sun setting
and even bleeding go to kalk bay,

flee into the hillside full of ghosts
of cattle and angels speaking khoi

with flaming spears. my body is sick
of the refusal to see things as they

really are
after all this harshness

and bargaining with
cruelty.

it would rather wait for the moon until
it understands

what the eland know.

it would rather bury itself deep in the fynbos
and wait for fire.

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