PHANTOM LIMB LOVER (A PRAYER IN SEVEN PARTS)

1. My life is all the colors of a full gumball machine, and still, I miss you. Beaches blister, rippling in rising day, perfect save that one spot where you should be standing, unbreaking in the waves, grabbing fistfuls of sunlight and weaving them through your hair. Seagulls scream your name. Osprey eggs rattle, cracking wide to reveal fragments of your shattered eyes.  
2. You are the dream I can’t unsee, the song I will never unlearn. I don’t want to. I chant your name five times a day, bowing toward Mecca, my rug woven from memories of your hair, my prayers cobbled from fragments of your features. He had teeth like stars. His knuckles were mountains. He wore a scar on his chin. My toes, threading their way along the thin line separating sea from sand, have memorized your footprints by heart. Even when you are invisible, I follow you. Every hallelujah I ever sang belonged to you.
3. Sun splatters sea in streams of red, and I ricochet back to my moonscented bed to taste the tongue of your ghost. I recite the scriptures of your teeth. Your quicksand eyes swallow me alive. My brain becomes a hive of buzzing bees, blessing blossoming trees in the courtyard of an ancient temple ruin.
4.  For three seconds, I finally understand Jesus, cradle him in cupped hands until he melts into rain, strains through my fingers in streams of light, puddles around my feet, the pool of him reflecting star-bloom until he monsoons to the window. He takes his leave, dragging with him a plate of communion wafers and six full cans of beer.
5. I thrash here in the valley between life and death, chained between breath and breathlessness, and when you come to me in my dreams a skeleton, I learn to love your bones. I am no Buddha, but I am something. Already, I have the belly and the laugh. I hover halfway to heaven. My faith won’t move mountains, but it makes messes of termite mounds. If I haven’t found God, I’ve at least got some pretty good leads. At night, the flesh between my shoulder blades shreds to make way for embryonic wings.
6. Beloved, your grave is empty. You are risen. I float in the mouth of the cave.
7. Wait for me. I’m coming.
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