A poem by XARA ZABIHI DUTTON.

(for the boy who goes to the gym after his lecture)

His soles step worn pavements,

Jumping recognisable cracks

Building the palace of the body

His soles pad inside the grey obelisk

Seeking amber-lit convocation

Engineering the palace of the mind

One holds a protein shake before his torso

The other clutches a leather satchel at his side

 

Both share a grim demeanor instead of a smile,

Lips pinned by unpronounced cases.

 

Monochromatic concepts strike the lines of his brow

Engorge the folds of his eyes,

 

Yet they are one in inflections which concord:

deconstructing Demonstratives by hand

Spines exhorted to curvature,

by their labour they are hardened.

Repeated patterns wear paths into trenches,

Intensity transmutes into dogma.

Seeking to establish a stable identity,

They sacrifice their porousness; calcify.

As brittle as they are dog-eared,

They close in on themselves,

Drawing moth-eaten covers over their eyes.

Featured image Flying Green Penis Monster, from Decretum Gratiani with commentary of Bartolomeo de Brescia. Italy, 1340-1345. Image source: Granger, Historical Picture Archive.