Saturday, September 27, 2014


To listen to an audio recital of the poem, click here

Self-portrait on a happy and creative occasion


Child, you are not who you are,
But like a barn-door painted thrice too oft,
Over-varnished, re-cut to fit the loft,
Then hammered, wrought,
Re-scratched, re-painted,
Till the wood is malleably soft.

Parents, peers, professors of unlearning
And unsound advice - unheed them all.
Coffin-makers of the soul,
Carpenters of conscience
Exercising strict control - all
Must be stripped away:
Layer upon layer of learned existence.

Now you must remove the nails,
Immerse your soul in acid,
Let out the sap, the grume, the cruor,
Galvanise the gonads,
Stir up the sanies,
Quicken the haemads,
Manumit the grains of being
That the human godling may be carved
Out of the scrap.

Then chisel, cut by ever-deepening cut,
Slough with the plane each new-grown skin,
Render bone naked, member nude,
Buttress the broken heart in barbicans of flesh.

He who you would be will be,
The hand-cast Golem, self-made Adam,
Self-invigorated, self-inspirited,
Born of the virgin footsteps,
Risen like a phoenix from its wounds.

"Child" is published in "Welcome To My World, Selected Poems 1973-2013", The Argaman Press. Click here to purchase the book.

Copyright © 2014 David Prashker
All rights reserved
The Argaman Press

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