Confessions of a Legionnaire Poet

Why should you listen to anything I have to say?

Why believe me—who am I
but a night watchman patrolling the graveyard
in silence;
counting bodies;
assigning names to faces
—always the same faces, too—
empty pockets, drawing jeers
from doppelgangers in strange suits, betting
on who will fold first.

I know I’m a no-one—more even!
I am legion!

4 am.
Waking. Limbs. Head. Whole.
Rising like infinite balloons

My eyes open and there is The Monk!
Raising me with the sun in his belly.
I blink;

he’s gone
to the back of the line.

I blink,
and there is The Poet,
mixing words with bananas and coffee—
bitter and sweet like his needs;
trimming the roots
from the leaves.

Enter the others. The family tree
in full spin.
The house is awake and asleep
and in need
of folding and molding.
Brushing, dressing, holding.
Kissing, loving, seeing, scolding.
Feeding them worlds
in a glance.

The general has taken His post!
No need for muted Monks or wordy poets!—
How tight a ship can they run?

There are mountains to move here and there,
there and here—and back over there
with a yawp and a bark;
shoes to be polished with spit!

The general is 7 am.

7:35 am.
Yawn. Switch.
Driving to work.

The speaker of the house
in gear,
speaking for the crowd and crown—
and the witness! well
He just waits in silence,
the silence slowly becomes Him.
He is nursing
with eyes wide open
in and into
the twilight hours—moving
His calm shadow of skin
through time across oceans
of personalities

on their way
like lambs to slaughter,

the view from their eyes
His blood;
the meat from their bones
His rattle,
each beautiful beat of their hearts—
or drop of expendable venom
from their poisoned black hole
made of sucking, expandable void!

His milk.

Zero hour.
Time is a non-issue;
my watches never did work anyway.

I am riding on the back
of the speaker of the house—
my gray mare on a misty gray day—
through the English countryside;
we ride to forget ourselves
and remember ourselves
and all in the same breath
of movement,
searching for allies and snakes
like a soldiers
navigating the jungle
by the light
of a full war moon.

8:00 am
The cat care specialist
at the humane society
punches in her time card,
assuming her position
as such.

The rest of the day
under fire.

I am
all together:
a world in a world in a world
holding the fort of the damned—

while the witness
holds god
in my belly of hands,
silent as the yard He patrols,
watching the words between words—
from behind enemy lines,
from the plague stained trenches
of man.

Why should you listen to anything
I have to say?

Why read me like paper on fire?
or share me like herbs with the dying?

I am just a traveler like you,
treading water on a sinking ship!

I’m no one.
No body at all.

Not even I
listen to me.

© Kristin Reynolds 11 16 2010

Confessions of a Legionnaire Poet

Kristin Reynolds

Norway, United States

  • Artist
  • Comments 12

Artist's Description

We are legion: bodies within bodies, personalities taking over like the changing of the guards, coming forth when the situation demands it.

These are just more words from the front lines,
speaking to those without ears—
who’s hearts are a flame in their bellies.

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