Oyster Boy Review 07  
  September 1997
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» Levee 67



Jeffery Beam

You will say you remember me on the last day when frozen we stutter through ice. You will say motion is between us, that years of speaking to and for each other has its boundaries, has a word or meaning or symbol discernible in the future beyond our pain or invisible hatred of departure and that we are its captive. But I have the odor of your lips next to my eyes. I cast off the weight of poison the dart your odor spins into my heart. The ice forces my hands into an arch, a yogic temple of pleasure shooting through them. I forget odors and figures I forget the seething power of hatred the seething power of blueblack wounds and the rush of blood to the temples. Our journeys, perilous. My vapors mix with the infinite.

. . .

And the Shadow enters me. Enters the snapdragon path in the center of my chest, the bronze being murmuring in my stomach, captivated by release, captivated by the body of pain. I remember now the vast sun unpeels its skin each winter—a lizard. The golden chiefs give feathers of blue to hide their magic in . . . women of citrus gather blossoms the moon gives them soaking the petals for oils. The sleek triumph of a man's body insistent all-owning transparent tiger-lillies lasting only an hour in the jar, leaving a residue of fragrance and blood, residue of light boiling in the bowl. Death strides through my belly, awakening the mum-odor of silence, a vast unbreakable silence pure as granite thick as noon snow. As I turn, a face lifts its fisheyes from the snow. Quietly the white settles on my shoulder. Alone with the moon, my ointments bleed into the streets, leaning forever against the dragonwings of the sun.

. . .

Using the body as a tool to realize
in all its infirmities
through watery soap
Using the sweatboiled rim of skin
hung in an arc
on a band of light
Crazy light of fabulous fingers
in the core