James Doyle

The Pulses

Inside the bone are thousands

of tiny caverns. Each one

winds through the needle

of the others; each one

draws through its darkness

walls curved with chalk

and ochre, all the skies

we will ever know, all

the faces that will yield

to our touch as each year

twines inside the next. Blood

layers the images we follow

to death; night after night

dream descends these corridors

to find the lovers we will

marry in the day. Our gods

twist against their demons

endlessly and await whatever

imprint of flesh we will grant

them in our lives. We conjure

from the black arts that line

all the narrow passageways

ourselves. We fill the hours

and the graves with our tracings,

skulls etched into the planets

and their crescents, skeletons to mar

the flat deliberations of the sun.