The Suit of Lights

Behind closed doors and drawn blinds,

In the midst of this man-made twilight,

I’m putting on my suit of lights*,

My fragile armor;

/

Woven of silk thread, decorated

With pearls and diamonds,

It is designed not to protect the wearer

But to challenge darkness;

/

It will not stand the test of steel

Nor this of fire,

And through the fine skin-like fabric

Pain and desire

/

Hurt, wound and scar the one, who calls

Upon herself the evil of the world

And, like its axis, stands alone

Inside the whirlwind;

/

Behind closed doors and drawn blinds

In front of a mirror,

Dressed in my suit of lights, I check the fit

Before the devil sees me;

/

Its fabric glows, its diamonds shine,

Its white pearls glimmer;

It will be torn; I will be killed,

Yet, my heart sings as if I were the winner

*Suit of lights or traje de luces[1] is the traditional clothing that Spanish bullfighters (toreros, picadors and rejoneadors) wear in the bullring. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traje_de_luces)

Ta Prohm

at Ta Prohm Temple, Angkor, Cambodia
at Ta Prohm Temple, Angkor, Cambodia

I thought, she said,
Since I was made of rock,
That naught existed
That was stronger than me;
/
Much time had had to pass
Before it proved me wrong,
Before the roots of trees
Which human hands had felled
/
Grew through their pain,
Forgiving what’d destroyed them,
Embracing me, whom they’d been
Killed for, as their own;
/
I thought, she said,
That I was made of stone;
I see instead
That we have all been made
Of life and boundless hope