a brief sermon on the nature of things



the world is a house on fire

zhe said


& when zhe said house, zhe meant

cathedral, mosque, temple in the heart

of the city, gone up in flames, gone

down to ash


the world is a mosque on fire


& when zhe said world, zhe meant

body & when zhe said fire

zhe meant st mary baptist, meant 16th street

meant some row house on osage avenue


the world is a body on fire

zhe said


& when zhe said body, zhe meant

a gothic cathedral in the heart

of mosul, a temple on osage avenue

a house in the middle of jerusalem

a living church in a car on a street

in texas or michigan or georgia

a row house full of dancers

at the corner of south orange & esther


& when zhe said fire, zhe meant

arsonist, police, drones

meant a man with a gun


the world is a house & it’s on fire

& when zhe said house, zhe meant body

& when zhe said body, zhe meant world

& when zhe said world, zhe meant holocaust


the world is a fire that smolders on the edge of town

fire is a dancehouse, an everlasting furnace

it’s a body bright & fallen from heaven


the body is a house that is the world in flames