Landscape Falling Inward

Let us tell the landscape of your body.
Ancient books sing of this garden,
but where it lies is forgotten.
I will tell you.
It is time to remember,
a time for maps, directions, inward fallings...
The Tree of Life is your spine.
It grows at the center of your flesh.
You are the desert, you are the banishment,
you are the tilling of the promised land,
you are the return.
Luminous roots extend through the sole
of your foot to the center of the world.
In the lower branches is a ripe red fruit,
a pomegranate, spilling countless stars of blood.
Perhaps it is your beating heart, bewildered and wild,
cradled in wings of the Serpent Goddess
who spirals round your stem, upward, downward,
outbreath, inbreath, offering you the wine of yourself,
whispering, "Take, eat, this is Your body."
But perhaps it is only the terrible stillness
at the center of the vortex
that inhales creation.
Your backbone is a Burning Bush
before whom Moses removes his quivering skin
like a serpent, its upper branches bursting
into the flames of your cortex,
many small but potent herbs budding
in those fiery synaptic twigs, your pituitary plum,
the almond of your amygdala,
your pineal amethyst tied like a medicine bundle
to a branch that sticks through your forehead
dripping neuro-peptide soma nectar
for thirsty desert sparrows.
The soft spot in your crown imbibes
the hidden light of a thousand new moons.
The spaciousness of death is the talisman
you were born with.
What you felt when you were a pollywog
in the womb, chasing your tail,
swimming among distant stars,
you have permission to feel today.
Remember your asanas, how you imitated
lions and pigeons, made intergalactic gestures,
rolling, stretching, twisting pudgy angel fire
into a molecular song?
You still have permission to dance.
Remember exploring the sounds of your body,
those un-struck embryonic bells of meditation
before there were commandments,
when every scripture was a flame
ignited in your rib cage?
You were a syzygy of burps,
"Ah! Um! Bhum! Shrim! Phwat!"
having no idea that your baby talk
was full of mantras, all of them meaning,
"Let there be light!"
your tongue the creator.
You were a double helix of unutterable
conversations with silence:
you fell asleep murmuring,
"So'ham, So'ham, I am God, I am God."
Your little fists ecstatic mudras,
your chest a shaman's drum, your throat
a medicine woman's rattle, twined
with sinews of snake on tortoise shell,
every babble a bija filled
with Great Mother Shakti.
In slumber your breathing sustained
the tides and moon for the world
where you were about to be born.
Don't you know that your parents first met
in the garden between an inhalation
and a sigh?
Was it the season of swelling or repose?
You walked with the Goddess
in the cool of the evening,
through the scent of laughter,
the murmur of pollen.
You were the garden, She was the Spring.
And yes, you have permission
to return there now.

Hear the poem read at this LINK.