We need a different kind of flesh


What we have is marvellous but it lacks resilience.
I know this because once I was sitting in a café
                                                  sipping dark coffee,
and the light sifting through the windows
had this powdery softness
that sometimes comes early-to-mid-morning,
before surrendering to the brawny glare of afternoon.

And I had just noted this thought about light in my notebook,
when a white-haired person wearing a blue bandana 
                                                  and gardening shirt,
rose to leave and—silhouetted in that full-flowering light—
signalled a simple acknowledgement of my presence.

And what rushed to fill me, inexplicable and irrepressible,
                                                  was joy;
so intense and primal that I was brought
                                                   to tears
and would have been overwrought,
                                                  had it endured.
Yet how I longed for it to endure
(but hadn’t the frame for it).

It was this experience that convinced me of an afterlife:
where, at some forever-open café we’ll all be changed
and in a peach-tinted flash receive new flesh, new bones,
bodies made to bear ancient crimson flames,
                                                      and so,
go out into glad afternoons, magnificently naked.


  1. Whether it’s heaven or Woodstock, it’s a dream worth having. Read something today that Woodstock wasn’t actually at Woodstock but at Bethel, NY. Bethel in Hebrew is “house of God.”

  2. Those moments of fleeting rapture are heaven enough for me. “… different kind of flesh.” is one of those moments for me. Thanks

  3. Again, you speak to the inside of our souls, knocking on the walls helping us to free ourselves. This poem brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for kindly sharing with us.

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