I no longer resolve,
fatigued by my own failure,
all previous years’ zeal turned
to crumbs surrounding my table.
Instead I will sweep
and, in sweeping, take note
of these archeological layers,
the fossils of all these discarded selves
and all I thought I could be:
the days I failed myself before sunrise,
the anger that burned before the day felt its heat;
the bile that boils, the vilest of coils
that wrap around the fledgling soul.
And, in this excavation, I will pause
a moment in this pile, this dross,
scoop it, run it through fingers like sand, and find
that it only, on balance, attests to what I know
yet daily forget in this folly of self.
Paul knew it too, felt thorns engorging flesh,
eyes still smarting from their fallen scales,
wings still wincing from their bursting forth,
the Christ that cocooned and bloomed inside
this tender reminder (Christ,
let it be mine now): Child,
I died so all this death might die,
so dying you might live.