Simon Whitechapel

I stand beneath a sea of light,
And to the sun I lift and lout
Atop this tower of ice-white stone,
Around whose foot there glitters stain
Of gemmish gold: a cruellest floor
From which to crush out blood for God,
For God, for only God.

My life I stand and hold and prize,
Excited by the sun's warm praise
Upon my face, my asking lips;
And sun-brightened memory leaps
And girds me up for when I fly
And plunge to come afar to God,
To God, to only God.

The wine I poured was red as blood;
I raised one hand and trumpets blared
With tongues of brass through smoke-sweet air.
I knelt and stood and felt each eye
Upon my mignard priestliness
Upraised to thick black bulk of God,
Of God, of only God.

The beasts were brought and necks were bared;
My knife of silver slit, embued
With unimmortal blood; came sweet
Stinks of stale and dung, gold and swart
Symbols of our bestial lowness
Before the heaven-high of God,
Of God, of only God.

The sistra clashed like thorns of sound,
So sweet with pain I almost swooned;
Oil-flooded flames laughed up at flesh;
Bright mouths and teeth did speaking flash
In syllables of light, not air,
In od'rous phrasing words from God,
From God, from only God.

And now the time was come to dance:
In purplest silk I swayed through dense
Fire-veined clouds of catching fumes;
And with me danced the conjoured forms
Of lesser gods, all sloughing awe
Before the awful Fact of God,
Of God, of only God.

That time is done; now is the time
I stand and know I'll have no tomb;
Smashed, my corpse shall not have honour
But picked up and flung like any
Dead to father-breast of Tiber;
On earth unpraised for love of God,
Of God, of only God.

The sun warms and I am ready;
Below me soldiers flash; reedy
Low cries are lifted to my ears
Through a throb of quickened blood; yews'
Shade falls; I eat the sour tuber
He hath prescribed; and leap to God,
To God, to only God.

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