I found myself blind, behind a bamboo curtain, clapped in sensory deceptions and stacked pheromones, my aloe illusions indentured to what seemed. The leggy web-lass splayed her motif in pleasure quarters; veiled beneath a soupçon of pollen. A mime: a chatelaine, a single dancer. Her whims, lithe enough to assuage the trepidations of my impetuous inquisition. I purled, pulsating, nonplussed; my eyes crossed in her anther. Gold-plate heightened the way light played on them; silken, tailoring me to my denouement without an antidote: a spun chrysalis hemmed by his lotus thorn—still courting hopes of dying softly.
Somewhere along the River Euphrates, in the garden of good and evil, the ghost of Juan Ponce de Leon possessed the serpentine tongue of an emerald python who told the Moorish tale of an everafter fountain formed by strange tides and diver’s tidings, where red flamingos panned for watercress, scarlet parrots preened their plumes in the refilled cup of Christ, forbidden fruits dined on flesh without conviction, and fabled springs foretold the lies of each inquisitor.
An Israelite prophet sojourning in Sierra Leone, happened on a Gullah priest canting Igbo slave tunes at a ‘ring shout.’ From this priest, the prophet begged a bundle of twigs with which to weave a weeping willow basket. He lined it with lion tuft, and blood-stained Kinte cloth—filled it with goobers, Jollof rice, grandmama scriptures, & living sculptures cast in the doctrines of Father Divine. He strapped this burden to his back with overseer lashings, walked on water through a chain of Lowcountry islands, & laid it all on the altar of magnolia anthers.