weekend-readsThe Soldier on Routine

Katy Didden

We are living with the young Christ
     in the Green Zone. Even we who are not He
suffer hands tugging our hems,

though our minds select the bodies
     we see. Young Christ is dual,
but what of Him is like us is, like us,

taken in by order: the roof and walls,
     the roof and walls, inside which we sleep—
boot scuffs and dust, the white floors wiped clean.

He does not eat some days, and so too
     we choose, and can. It’s not that this
isn’t hell, though the lamp-switch lights

long into the night. If we could name
     the mindframe sight, the body wall,
a solid feature with a latch, through which

we exit, armored, to disorder, that is, Ur—
     the original being, or its prebecoming.
Out there the zone is we, the tank

a brutal country, singing. Young Christ
     is dual, though even the god He is won’t
interfere. The cells beneath the surface

of the seen he says he senses like his own
     skin, still unflayed. That scrim in him,
keeping him human, among us crimping

barbed wire over buildings. Our hands
     bleed, but then we’ve made a thing
and can put it from us. If only they’d stay far

from us, or else we infiltrate a mind—
     walking in on the backs of the word
uttered, a word shook loose through

the terrifying bodies, where every pore is
     unbarriered. A hand nailed to a house,
the pierced room a cage, the wound a seam

we fill with seed. Body in which we live
     unsafe, and then He breaks through to
two at once, and this by violence. We who

are not He cannot contain it. Schism of many
     chambered brain, schism of time, schism
of no into infinite pain, amnesia of the known, of

where we were before and if we’re where
     Eden was, where’s the latch? Where are
leaves to cover all these bodies? We watch

our hands in motion widening the wound—
     it’s there we enter, as though we could pass through
to the princeless, incinerated kingdom.

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