House of the Deaf

La Leocadia

She would stand there almost bored,
Overseeing the nightmare world
Just beyond her framed extravagance,
Veiled in night among rocks,
Eyes blown back inwardly, lost
In an abyss of time, remembering
Her newly departed husband,
Dead among these infernal regions,
Her soft flesh meshed in blankness
And blackness, watching
The old painter feverish who kept vigil,
Even Goya moving between black and black:

Saturn Devouring His Son

An old king devours his children,
His eyes emptied of their light
Are black as night, and all the sins
He eats are more than he can know,
Banished as he is from self and self,
All knowledge of his former life, gone:

Judith’s Slaying of Holofernes

She almost relishes this beheading,
Her knife held high, her tender face
And eyes seducing this warrior lord
To his secret rendezvous with death;
Even the prayers of a saint fall silent
In this darkened temple of delight:

The Sabbat

The gran cabrón, horned and bearded speaking
To the throngs, their hunched visages lowered
And listening intently to the songs or sermons;
A melancholy prophet or shepherd, lost
Among black thoughts, a demon menace
Teaching his flock the ways of blackness
To the rhythms of a woman playing
An accordion in apathy of all unruliness
As the black one instructs his children
In the dark arts of sex and violence:

The Pilgrimage of Saint Isidore

Serpentine and slithering along in procession
Moving to an inner rhythm of necessity,
Night and stars and black sounds abound,
And the melancholy throng sings ecstatically
In tragic tribulation in an infernal saturnalia:
Festive of the farmer’s pledge of dust
Turned bitter in a black season, blackly barren:

Two Old Men

Toothless grimaces, grinning
At the misery of existence,
Carping vittles from fool’s labor,
Listening to the laughter intent
On disastrous replication of curses
And lamentations for a brewed soul;
Clasping flesh like boned wisdom
To the fetid stench of an abyss
Encompassing them in its silence
Till their lives fold into a black thought:

Goya wandered in an infernal maze
For years and years, his agon
With the demons of his self kept
Competing in his brain for outlet;
And in the surrounding blackness
He found his inner genius: cloven
Fabrications of a blackened heart
Released at last into a dark world.
Necessity’s child come home at last
In a black destiny of night and chaos.

– Steven Craig Hickman ©2014 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author is strictly prohibited.

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