Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Mud Hymn of Ἀντίνοος

My friend PSVL, the ever-wonderful doctor ἐκκλησία Ἀντίνοου, has announced a poetry challenge for this new Gregorian year! I have let this blog idle for too many moons, and I am hoping that I can use this challenge to post at least one thing a month here, a foundation from which I can build a habit!

But, first, an update: On July 17, four days after my own dies natalis and the night after introducing my Sir to my Mxtr, I was assaulted by a homophobic and misogynistic roommate. A knife was briefly involved. No one got hurt, thankfully (that night; he has since gone on to terrorize a metamour of mine who still lives there), but I got myself the hell out. I was homeless for three weeks until I found an urban farm where I thought I might be able to make some sort of home for a while. That was whence I posted the Pentacle Prayer here in August. Sadly, that did not work out either, and after two months (and just a couple of days before I headed to Wolf Creek Radical Fairy Sanctuary for Samhain), I was homeless again.

I have been homeless for the past six months, trying to drum up business as a whore (and failing), pursuing California State Disability (slow, slow success), and dreaming of tending a temple. So if you know of anyone, anywhere, who has a little bit of space they could provide for a mup temple and its attendant monk, please let me know! All I would need was space for a tent for me to stay in and for the actual temple itself, which I could build on their land if they wished, or house in a shed, which could be (relatively) moved if I ever moved away, if that is what they want. OK, some financial assistance to get resources like possible building materials, furniture for the temple, statues, and ritual supplies might be rad, too, but isn't what I'm asking. I just need the space to live and work. My practice would be one of deep devotion, and my usual mix of intense religious study and spiritual experimentation. That's what you get when you find yourself as both a reconstructionist nerd AND a Discordian chaote! As a templekeeper, I would spend a lot of time maintaining the actual structure and contents of the temple, sweeping, cleaning, decorating, feeding and clothing the gods housed within, et cetera. As a monastic, I would be engaged in nine prayers a day, work/labor for its own sake (gardening, perhaps, or writing, or cleaning, cooking, fucking, et cetera -- I would happily dedicate that time to giving back to the land where I was staying, if so desired), and so on. The temple would ideally be open and available for anyone who needed it at any time and would hopefully be able to function as a (rather small, but functional) sanctuary for any passing muppets who might need it. My current financial status is spotty at best, so I would be unable to assure a regular monthly rent right now, but I would be happy to tithe from any donations the temple might receive, and am happy to do labor as well, and I am working on improving my situation (through hierodulic work, SSDI, etc.). The Temple, subject to appropriate divinations, is likely to house all of the mup deities, and I am happy to house also any deities or spirits my landlord might like.

So, do you know anyone who might be interested in subsidizing such a project?

Or maybe would you mind asking around to folk for me?

But, anyway! I said it was PSVL's challenge which brought me back to the blog, so here is January's poem for Ἀντίνοος (also, remember, my poetry is always alive and changing -- comments are welcome!).  I haven't yet figured out how to write in hieroglyphics in my text, which would be really nice.  Does anyone know how?

The Mud Hymn of Ἀντίνοος
"If the body is a text with its own narrative structure, what does it mean when it is written with excrement? . . . [N]umerous critics have pointed out that this ‘“abhorrence” of excrement is in no way “natural”’ but the result of culturally contingent socialization. . . . Excrement was a relic of ‘gay matter,’ ‘an intermediate between the living body and dead disintegrating matter that is being transformed into earth, into manure. The living body returns to the earth its excrement, which fertilizes the earth as does the body of the dead.’ Carnivalesque excrement functioned both as the material sign of abundance as well as humiliation; a magical medicine as well as corruption; renewal as well as death. Excremental images, understood in a richly complex way by contemporaries, have become coarse and debased as we have stripped them of their ambivalence."

Susan Signe Morrison, Excrement in the Late Middle Ages: Sacred Filth and Chaucer's Fecopoetics

The ashes in my mouth
struggle to turn into juice.
they have begun to see some success
but that leaves my words muddy
and I still choke.

Beautiful boy,
when I walk, you walk.
Beautiful boy,
we needn’t do anything to make
these hands into your hands
these breaths into your breaths.
Beautiful boy,
my hands’ joy is already your joy,
my breaths’ work is already your work.
Beautiful boy,
whatever happens with this trinket dangling
between my legs,
or the hungry hole on the other side,
whatever graces these breasts
or this hungry hole above with glorious wetness,
is for you.
Couldn’t change it if the Caesar ordered me to;
I have made my choice.
And your Caesar would never ask.

I learned how time tasted when I turned thirty
-- like something dry and burned which only tastes bad halfway to something wet and sweet.
At thirty-two, I shattered, am shattering.
This was you
and this was for you,
O Crossroads of Many Gods.

Mind, free Heart.
Mind, stop making fun of Heart.
Mind, stop mocking em for what you make em do or rather not do.
Mind, what has Heart ever done to you?
Heart, why does Mind still you so?
Do you not beat with the convulsing of my lungs?
Is it arrhythmia,
milliseconds of Mind’s loneliness as you do not speak?
The two of you invited him here,
our meaty computer with skin-pleasure walls
rising to form a cottage
and hair smoke from our chimney.

The Νειλος at night, in October, is like glass
Hapi’s mirrored face
movement unseen below
weak above strong beneath

He plunged!
He plunged into us!
He plunged into us headlong!

The first god to arrive at the crossroads
dead living Asar!
dead living Asar!
Ὄσιραντίνοος floated to earth.
Ὄσιραντίνοος floated to the swampy bank.
Ὄσιραντίνοος floated to the city of He Who Never Is Still.
The second god to arrive at the crossroads.

The thick black mud came that year
more than ever before
more than ever since.
Praise the Beautiful Boy’s Beautiful Black Mud!
Rich it is and riches it brings
Hapi returns to eir skin
remembering eir breasts
remembering eir penis
The famine disappears
as all Khemet, as all Roma and the whole imperium
bend their chewing mouths
and eat their ground
We are what we eat.

I comfort myself with thoughts of alchemy.
Only motion is nourishing.
Dark juice from white ash.
Only the dead do not move.
But we plant our seeds in the dead.

This is what happens in the Middle Voice.
This is neither transit
ive nor intransit
ive, but reflex

This is what happens in the Middle Voice.
Mind is sneaky.
Heart is conspiratorial.
The gods need places to rest
for the world is large and needy and full of good friends to chat with.
Blessed by Epicurus are those who give the gods a moment’s peace!

Speech, pick on someone your own size.
Speech, you are louder than Flesh and Flesh has something to say.
I cannot hear.

This is what happens in the Middle Voice,
temples are quiet places to rest,
warm days are my breath,
a slight breeze is my eyes,
good food my knees
strong wine my Merlin-aged Kala urine
a fine cigar my beard
all the vices of juice and ash which taste so good

All for him,
all for them,
the all of them.
Not for me though I forget
and the forgetting is for them, for the all of them.
This unknown baby we have named for the ancient oath,
the giving of oneself as human sacrifice
reaped in battle
cooked in adrenaline
marinated in mud and blood
omnommed with teeth made of enemy’s blades
to ensure your side’s victory.
This we named the unknown baby: Devotion
and took em into our home,
decorated with fingernail stained glass windows.
This unknown baby whose parents are unknown.

This is what happens in the Middle Voice:
we raise the baby together in a life between the cracks.
Spiky brokenglass pieces of me into a loving rattle.

I am listening.
I am listening.
I am listening.

I give and I give and I give
and I receive and I receive and I receive.
It is nothing special.
It is the way we all are:
one hand giving mud pies to the other.
Subject and Object collapse.
I’m finally seeing some success
and I ain’t changing nothing
and Caesar isn’t asking.

Ianus opens his door of a mouth
tongue working at its dryness
My temple floor his tongue shakes as he coughs.
My body fingerpainted over with mud.

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