When I Stopped Grasping

I would ride a ray of gold back to the sun,
thinking, this is who I am.
Then I would follow a breathful of stars
back into the night, feeling,
this could be real...
But when I stopped grasping for fire
and fleeing from shadows,
when I gave up the path of healing
and came home to my wound,
when my song vanished in the quiet
like a wisp from a blown out wick,
plums ripened in the dead of Winter,
corpses seeped honey from fragrant graves,
millions of chimes rang from the hollow
in a thistle seed.
How do you know that this is not
the dream of a mouse
squatting in your old socks?
Or that it's not the sexual longing
of an earthworm?
How do you know that a grain of sand
isn't a palace of carousing angels
who laugh like crystal at the size of your mind?
In the previous age, the senses
were windows and doors
through which color, music and frankincense
entered your stillborn emptiness.
Now your eyes, ears, nostrils and tongue
are fountains pouring a rainbow
out of the packed black silence
between heartbeats, the fragile vacuum
where lilacs and lilies die back,
to drink from a terrible sweetness
that is neither light nor dark.