The Figure That Is None

Words are meaningless
As colors on swatchbooks, dead
On a page, so distant from the world
Of the living, of breathing.

Suffocated taxidermy, a taxonomy of structures
Building infinite thoughts with
A finite palette of colors to portrait the entire universe:
Beautiful to admire, impossible to live in.

12-point font characters, in single-spaced stages, cages for captive
Beasts with no wits— surviving in a world of human
Eyes, who browse, search, and peck through seas of seeds that never fully sprout—
Discarded as soon as they’re rendered, moused over their putrid carcasses.

Never trust human speech when spoken,
Only when written, and its creator has become nothing but
Strings of sigils printed in lifeless-black:
Lines, dots, angles, curves, and crosses.

Learning to read to learn to ignore—
When the author is alive, he is a heretic, a liar,
When he’s dead, a prophet and martyr—
A perfect god making an imperfect world

Inhabited by vulgar people
Speaking bastardized languages
Far from the time when speech was like birdsong, grunts and clicks that said more than any
Unearthing from the bone-white pagination: his miscreations, his aberrations, his abortions.

Drink his tarry nectar with your eyes,
Allow it to cocoon in your mind,
Metamorphose in your mouth
And butterfly in your voice:

To speak as you write
And to write as you think;
To think as you act
And to act as you speak.

Words evolve, ink bleeds,
Hearts change, bones turn to dust.
When you take away the letters,
What is left of the word?

Photo by Brodie Vissers from Burst

11 thoughts on “The Figure That Is None

  1. Many points to ponder, Ze. Coincidentally, I saw a page of Arabic writing yesterday and had no idea what it said but damn it was beautiful to look at the swirls of the characters and the orderliness of the words on the page.
    Ω

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Just… wow… It’s one of your simplest poems so far, but it truly does make a statement.
    “To speak as you write
    And to write as you think;
    To think as you act
    And to act as you speak.”
    That was my favourite part. It really sums up how I view people’s actions and thoughts. I applaude your immediacy. Well done!
    Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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