Nos Et Mutamur In Illis

January 26, 2009
By Cierra Lowe, St. Louis, MO

Nos Et Mutamur In Illis


What does the artist know of beauty?
What does the poet know of love?
We must eat, drink, and be merry today
For tomorrow may never come

The only paradise is paradise which has been lost
And so what do we know of happy endings?
Give me your hand and be sure to follow close
Let me take you back to the beginning

When the sirens begin to sound
Remember that the end has just begun
For what was built in seven days
Can be destroyed in one


What does winter know of affection?
Frozen words composed of frozen breath
Linger fleetingly between us here
A heartless reminder of things left unsaid

What does instinct know of reason?
He'll take off her shirt as she takes off his shoes
Take me down with you, tangle me in sheets
And we will intertwine like roots

What does the present know of the lasting?
He says that all things must come to a close
Paper souls flutter as the tide recedes
To scenes that end with but a whisper and a moan

What does desire know of consequence?
Push her around, tell her that she's useless
Pin her writs together like a thousand times before
Everything just boils down to bite marks and bruises

What does hurt know of discretion?
Of course it's all meaningless when lacking trust
But the machine won't stop for you to catch your breath
We do what we have to and call it what we must

What does purpose know of vacancy?
It's a steel tumor that grows deep within your chest
Like the shadow of a loved one lost
Absent of light or warmth or breath

What does one know about the other?
There is so much more than what on the surface lies
Perhaps you want to hold her close and steal her pain
He says that he'll make no promises, but he can try

What does necessity know of compromise?
There is a certain hunger that will never be filled
Your demons tear at the walls and say it's art they make
They render us slaves with a pulse but no will

What does existence know of reality?
With just a drop or two the whole universe can alter
And your hands may very well reveal the future
But they will not divulge for whom they falter

What does grief know of sanity?
My hands were too small to keep you safe
Now you sleep upon ceramic and ash
Were I patiently watch until you wake


What does civilization know of invention?
What we really need to discover is how to rewind
So that we could undie and unhurt and unfight
And raindrops would ascend back into the sky

Lovers would love and then dress one another
And glass windshields would unshatter as cars uncollide
Dresden would rebuild itself with 4,000 tons of bombs
And tears would roll up our cheeks and back inside

People would leap back into flaming buildings
Planes would uncrash into them and return to the sky
Everyone would walk backwards to their homes
And return to their families to hug goodbye

Baby birds would build eggs around themselves
Even though there would be no reason to be scared
Because we would all be forever unharmed
Until the day that we were never there

Perhaps guards would have helped Jesus off the cross
And returned it to that from which it came
And for just a kiss and thirty pieces of silver
Judas would have kept him safe

Perhaps Adam and Eve would be invited back into the garden
And all the animals would have poured forth from an arc
And in Genesis the Holy Spirit would hover over the waters
And then suddenly everything would go dark


Thousands of people walk in and out of our lives
There is no time to say goodbye; hello!
You must keep the door open to let all of them in
But it means that you must also let them go

For every man is but an island
And when the bell beings to toll
Remember the dust from which you came
Island fortress, island home

The author's comments:
This is dedicated to those who wasted nothing.

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