Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Philip Quinn: "Who prepares the body, packages it for the host?"

The Egyptian punches the time clock, pulls the brain out through the nose, 
     helps voyage the dead
What’s left—a crippled mime stored in a painted oblong box
The mummy’s unwrapped empty eyes of love

In the book of the dead, Horus and Anubis form the crew
Put the heart/soul on the scale with the hieroglyphic scars of the past
Somewhere along the wrinkled road map
After miles of caffeinic steering
Fingers reach for the devil’s glove

In the orbiting cathedral
Places wear out from genuflecting knees
Witness the bracket lines around the shellac mouth, the pictograms holding down 
     the motionless chest

No mirror steamed with breath shows the stranger
Entrusted with the cold final touch