Lay for the Day 24th
feast-day of the birth of St John the Baptist is also the pagan festival
honeybees have built in the hollow
of a locust tree. All the queens daughters
dance. I hear the voice of many waters.
He who follows me is him I
into the wilderness. The veils drop one
by one, until blood brims the silver dish.
I dip and dip until at last
comes up in my hands from the Jordan. John,
my dumbstruck father wrote, and found his voice.
I breast the stream that Moses
greater than all before and less than all
who come, who go out crying like one lost,
one last man, to afflict you with your choice.
I seize and plunge Gods
head, but mine shall fall.
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