POETRY BY STEVEN WOLF

 

I.

Hiking up the mountain.

An elation of sunlight and boulders and sweat,

a reverie for my body-mind to reverberate

in a cosmic incarnation---exhaustion!

my body craves it to give to my mind

to forget, to lose my self,

to live in a mitrochondrial metaphor:

imagining vigilant immune cells

shepherding vast vessels and tissue,

living parsecs of ganglia and leukocytes

working together.

Climbing skyward on a narrowing ridge

of rocks and dry, cool air

dizzying views open on both sides

while the west wind scatters the withered

dried-up flotsam of viruses

away from my soul.

And the only sound I hear is the buzz of neuropeptides talking,

mulling over the weather inside my body...

and occasionally the battle cries

of macrophage cells from Norse legends

reveling in engulfing and disgorging enemies,

spitting out the bitter invaders, dismembered;

flaunting the severed antigen particles

on their coats in prideful display.

Victorious little barbarians with pulsing veins

parading with pride and heated accomplishment

their mutilated minks and chinchillas

so unlike the foreign-adornment ritual of desperately serious opera goers

who belittle Life and Art

with pungent lack of purpose.

 

II.

Pathetic pathogen,

invincible species

compromising my body

with uncompromising fervor.

Yet individually oblivious

without a clue,

unable to smile

or admire the soaring pelicans

or muse on your mortality.