In peak of winter we wear black to frighten the dead souls

Wandering in winds---fulfilling superstitions

Surreal as shucking peas in a cemetery

While you stand, hands splayed (wide), dripping

Innocence and red paint

With a hypocrisy I cannot bear to Celebrate

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Nature stifled by stone and light warped by stained glass

In an atmosphere turgid with impotent prayers

Your faith recoiled, I remember, when I confided

My infatuation with the moon---how I agonized

Over the grasp her iridescent majesty had on me

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You washed your hands in dirty dishwater

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I will never forget

(that night I proclaimed)

I will not subjugate Self for Pietas---and stepped out

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Marveling

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Skin riveted by rain, sucking in bitter tea and pithy air

Wading into water fully-clothed and uninhibited, heady

With an ataraxic rush When the Lotus of Compassion Bloomed

Freedom on my forearm

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A/N: I'd really appreciate feedback on this one. Thanks. The dashes are the only way I can get the infuriating upload to recognize breaks.