Report of the Witness (V)
delivered at the Temple of the Forgotten
22.214.171.124.15, 8 Men, 13 Pax
Sire, because he loved the girl so much
he took her to pieces.
Each piece of her became a part of his own body.
Her little fingers slipped
inside his belly. Her left foot pushed
against the ticking
of his chest. Her long hair rested like a curtain
on his brain.
He held her severed arm against the light and licked
the pucker where the flesh was sheared away.
He studied how the ball
would couple with its socket.
When he slept her thighs drew up inside his thighs, her knees
bent into his, her little slit pressed against his cock.
When he woke, he saw with her eyes.
Because he loved so much
he had nowhere to put his love.
He had to make this single moment.
He would go that far for love:
Beyond all human law
It was himself he killed.
(He chose her because she understood.)
It was himself he loved.
(He had to get inside himself.)
He didn’t want to be alone.
(He needed a witness.)
He wanted to consume every part of her.
(The way the earth consumes the dead.)
Sire, she understood.
She gave her only life so that he should not perish.
He watched with her in the pit for three days
before he rose
with her inside him.
Her spirit rendered him perfect in the flesh.
The perfect father. A father in love.
Jonathan Weinert’s first book of poems, In the Mode of Disappearance (Nightboat Books, 2008), was selected by Brenda Hillman for the 2006 Nightboat Poetry Prize. His work is appearing or forthcoming in The Kenyon Review, The Modern Review, Green Mountains Review, The Laurel Review, 32 Poems, and elsewhere. Jonathan serves as web editor of the letterpress journal Tuesday; An Art Project and a poetry editor of the online journal Perihelion. (11/2007)