The Liturgy of the Flesh
In November, in Poland,
when the drivers honk like madmen,
you often fantasize
about the end of the world.
Daydreaming about love and hate,
not about forgiveness,
but about the punishment,
you imagine how fire shall consume it all,
and how all shall perish and wither away.
The sinful to pay for their disobedience,
the faithful to be rewarded for restraint.
All to be resurrected upon the end,
led by that sound of the trumpeter.
All the masses for the people long lost,
paid for with money wrapped in envelopes,
with faith that what is invested here
will bring profits there,
and that the body is not lost, but will be made anew
for those who knew how to use it well.
Luca Signorelli painted the scene,
showing how they hoist each other up,
proud of being flesh again,
and Jorie Graham gave it voice,
describing the master,
who dissects and penetrates.
But my mind cannot simply mend itself,
buried in the open flesh, like a snail.
Michał Choiński (he/his/him) teaches American literature at the Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland). He has written two academic books - his latest monograph, Southern Hyperboles came out with LSU Press in 2020. Choiński's debut pamphlet Gifts Without Wrapping was published by Hedgehog Press in 2019. His poems and translations of poetry were published in journals in Poland, in the UK and in Canada. In 2022, he'll be at Yale University, as a Fulbright Fellow, writing his next book.
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