Today's poem is by Yvonne Zipter

Manners of the Flesh
        for RPD

If I lift my eyes toward heaven,
will the rest of me be raised up, too?
If I press my hands in the manner of a prayer,
a hitchhiker of the spirit, will I at last arrive?
IfI kneel beside the bed of a loved one,
her body a splinter in her soul,
an ache in my heart,
a rent in the mantle of our history,
if I submit to the idiosyncratic nature
of the mind of life, which convens a gland—
the spitting image of an almond—
into a thorn, a spike, a bullet hotly seeking a mark,
if I let the salt of our collected tears
push like thumbtacks into my blank flesh,
will the reckoning of her days
do arithmetic tricks like loaf and fish
in the hands of an illusionist?
The body is a temple,
is temporary, temporal, tempestuous, untenable.
The body is an atheist, damn it,
even in war.

Copyright © 2015 Yvonne Zipter All rights reserved
from Southern Humanities Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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