Content Warning: themes of death & mental health
Alexander Mint – Three Times Clockwise Round the Stupa
Human life is founded on death;
I walk with the gait of my fathers.
My mothers are reborn in my children.
In this circle no gain much loss
a reckoning at the base of our gene.
I end here, complete as my name
in this sac male body
in my earth works and word plays
I start and end at a point
and the soul continues.
I know the weakness
that spells my death
it’s mercury, quicksilver
I’m half in and half out
of this one, team
already passed away
Find myself in a place I am not.
Funny that filled in delta,
funny that stranger’s home.
Somewhere there’s a bell for me,
but I shan’t find it going this way
past the cactus flower, toward the car,
back to the road, my way of life,
this way is a dark crystal.
I must follow the tiger’s eye
must lurk in the peace
until it impassions
breathe the scents into
the places they overwhelm
locks everywhere unlock
green beams from the leaf
point on the wheel turns under wheel
and there is no point.
Alex, you pinched in.
Cut off the sense from the place.
Love is not optional.
Withheld it swells
pus fills the vacancy; it’s hell.
A grey place lit up by lightning
still grey. Near the halfway point
I’ll feel worse when I’m older,
but I’ll feel better about it.
I think it’s criminal, Mr. Mint,
I think it’s criminal
what they’re doing to you.
He is doing it to hisself.
I am in the wrong place, not in love
caught in the red delta sands
holding up a flag.
I am not on the computer.
I am changing.
I need to take care of my self.
I am in need of touch
p l e a s u r e
I can’t give myself.
Knowing this to be true
I roll my eyes from blue
and yellow bursts over my crown.
Photograph: Zhangjiajie Sunset by D.C. Nobes
D.C. Nobes is a scientist who spent his first 39 years in or near Toronto, Canada, then 23 years based in Christchurch, New Zealand, 4 years in China, and has now retired to Bali. He used to enjoy winter but admits that he doesn’t miss the snow or the cold. His work has appeared in Tarot Poetry NZ and The Violet Hour, and is in press in miniMAG, Karma Comes Before, The Hooghly Review, Poetry as Promised, Whimsical Publishing Press, and Boats Against the Current.