Evening Will Come: A Monthly Journal of Poetics (Besmilr Brigham—Issue 49, January 2015)

In bulls does the earth-shaker delight.

the Iliad


only the primitive knew

unity of the blue toro



An ox, drudgery breed of death


equipped with fighting spears

the gore thorn


beast tamed a push-haul elephant

tugging water barrels, car—

through the madruga;

from marsh river, dry road home

and peace

work and pigeon

indolence—but the toro!

blue toro

born bull to be free and bound

double balls,

the not isolate unicorn

His eyes

heavy to the moon, cold stars planets,

green fields hung in the sky;

his big heart red against love for

instinct joys, his usurped flesh

pushes up

sun on belly full with

rebellion and torture


devil in the pit

the man fights for redemption;


to retrieve himself from the pit—

from animals


the judgment seat

A naked game, without masks


Only the meek cry

the Alejuela!

bloody flag on stick

that leads

into the dark interior

corral: he

runs in confusion with oxen

who march

the bludgeon of their feet

out of light

against the turbulent bugle and horse—

racing in herd, pushing sweaty and castrate

Field bulls

to be dragged stiff hooves

caminar rozando con el cuerpo

rope at the throat;

a rage of slaughter, under the team

drag mules

the horn against earth

grazes a cloud of dust, makes its deep

cut: tears and regret

the kill lagrimas del toro

A sex symbol

—the phallus

preserving energy, the man

absorbs a devouring

potential . . . the crowd’s strength

as we who see it

subconscious stimulation

to tear life loose from itself and give back

that radiant hardness


Hold-over of enemy brute:

he is the earth dragon

sea monster

fierce angel old Jacob forced by the horn on that

dark desert—the killer alligator a man goes

down into water for. prehistoric legend burning in


fighting with a corpse

his own weight that he heavily moves against

spun with the capes

until the sword blade cuts

The monstrous, the sinister which is holy

said Nietzsche

the exaggerate! cut-off circle of fixed


wise monkeys

cracking their whips at the mules

the crowd knows the

pass of death

load animals are whipped in fast

locked to the harness hitch

(blinders on)

pulled by the whiffle tree

raced with indifference, speed of

bush antelopes


tightening the trace chains:

body under the rattling noise raised tail

without reflex

smoothes with its dead weight

the flat disturbed great still moon’s face

covered in little rocks and sand

a frieze, the stance each plays

in that controlled area of motion


Dancing cadavre

exposed, its shape


the mad horn already caked to air with

blood and bulk, ramming the blindered horse

intricate thrower of light

the afternoon sun catches in glitter

against a deceptive cloth

red hilt of sword

center wild ring that shifts in perspective

he studies the man’s hips and thighs

against the large soft area

a flowing thing!

swirls in little shivers of air,

separated from the still post


His black and bloody


cleared space from which we see

the priest slayer (manolete)

at his back the Attis Bull

he holds the earth on his horn—

cave drawing, as

heavy the

whirling cape opens and the bull becomes winded,

red tor-il gate of fright

that he came in at his only


as though he could go back

 to be pulled slowly in laps his great bulk

about the slaughter round, or a more strange

crowd clap from the skies an ‘indulto’


Toro fuerte, brave one!

  held back from the killer’s axe

this is not a butcher’s pen, fragility

of man that with all his traps

becomes sub-ject harnessed to his own

will, falling through

fire to surpass himself—

the bush buck (Hunac Ceel) diving

into still earth-pit through the white rock

cenote, not to pull up a heart;

carrying the load of his time

 the celebrated


male dressed for the sun (great sunned flowers

he walks on, women and harps)

drugged with incense,

a crowd he stands in purity before

 indent-5until the hot knife

strikes bone

gutted a red organ bleeds back its source


Lifted from the arena

last rush

in glory of

moisture and fierce hard drying—made

stiff and alive

from a most unnatural resurrection

huge golden calf

thrown against the sun


The blue bull’s urge is primitive, he sees

only illusion

rushing to find the cracking bone

structure of his enemy

—and when the point comes!

javelin power

gate of release

air swelling the big passionate nostrils,

an interior sound

only animals can make

belly throat, bowel and muscles surging


trumpets of thrown-apart air ranges

the broken current

Net that holds and propels him

a mask in shape of

his mammoth sex

a dead face like a bowl

shows the living stillness;

the dead show to the living

stillness of the mask


From fields of innocence

when held down, the ear-mark slashed,

knife cutting through skin layers, helpless

calf the burning iron

branding him not belonging—

will he ever get to

outside force which races the heart’s

confusion; even young he was hard

for punchers to handle mother charging

 line of the brave ones

against man and rope trying his horns;

a calm pace set loose for

wind, rain . . . to grow his flying hooves

stalked in a pit

the lure gathers

the lure

spreads his wide




The sphynx!

not the holy bird of recurrent fire

the masculine

see his fierce and mighty face

an ever-lasting chain,


in suffering

he is in part terrible

he is also in part miserable—

his loins hold fast to the earth

eyes reflected in emptiness

As a star reflects

without emotion

a non-consoling

repetition of the world’s face;

with no concept that includes a mind’s


he is (separate and unified)

the inescapable reality;

and though he repels

 he calls forth beauty



To know the mysterious, man

must look into heart of the animals

where reason has not shut off

the naturalness of rage—the faux

talent of insanity;

because this is not a straight-course world

blood heavy as wine, a drunkenness

runs fast with roots through every route in any flesh

and only that stiffness—

up to the hilt

(holy wrath image)

always a little out of focus,

a living thing that moving moves to still

dying in a sea of faces, reflects the shadow

blue bull

with the sun on his forehead

 the hawk

 the jackal, the ape, the man

 Egyptian gods of the dead

which is the secret of the mask;

he rides the air as

symbol of monster-beast


 not his own

full of whipped force sinister instruction

The forms each take in that separated fixed circle

controlled stay heavy with lines of

sea currents, and wind

trees cemented in earth that are blown,

completely bound in conflict

ritual of nakedness


 Against the bright glare

the man stands straight a hot arrow—

shimmering from its bow,

illusion of light

a bow string of shadow

cast by the arc


and from that planned mirage

above the white sand

come up out of the sea of sand

the bull watches . . .

entero whole to catch its movement

to hold where it is

Is there a meeting of terrains—?

the light blinds him

and the slightly shaking fan

of the arrow

shifts to the last knowledge he will not

make an error again, whirl himself about

the steady-glare pillar but stand back,

keep his own

mind ranges

through the arena of


strange animal that eludes his sense,

and then!

for the center

he will go straight into it!

the dark flag, gaudy wing quietly

shakes above the white air

 in body of white air

as though the sceptre a little wind struck him

and the bull nose lowers


 Blowing down his

his great spreading pain his eyes not

quick any more his own blood

pouring out of the glass he holds

Piteo: Andalucia

(as though seen through glass

fixed and not fixed the

breathless uncertainty)

interrupted bramidos jungle Miura


mating with death

and a horn moves

a horn lifts

 hits flesh

the damnable THING hurls up on the horn

thrown frightfully in the air

balances     (on the spit


 feet square before him

 the man to come up from it!

spent full with a preserved absorption)

‘Eje! Eje’ the torrero cries

ring of death

spot where sword should go

known as ‘the cross’

—and deceives tragedy

the man lures


He has it

he flings it

  not feeling the wound

sprawled legs, only a human little human

beast that crumples paper and rag a heaved lump

before his nose

on the ground

and his head rams in again at the bleeding smell

his own blood, the mirage

  he knows

at last

what it is—a man

he has caught the illusion

he has caught the trick

Illusion on illusion

and he lies down, falls a hilt of sword pressing

its heavy load into him more than he can with any luck


a lump of fur and breath

pulled down his knees to the sand, humped in

an irregular roundness

brought before this puny figure-god who lies

wet as a rag his sweat and the bull’s sweat

clogs of tearing blood

 mixed and mutilated


Open mouths of guilt

under the ring of faces

crying out,

pulled down drawn their guilt from inside themselves

to that still place

revolving point of the universe;

a dead man and a dead bull

what it looks like

what it feels like

  not witnesses

the sword peculiarly stuck in its hilt makes a

strange marked cross gathering light

above the crumpled shapes;

the bull

has torn loose from what was expected of him

has given back a radiant

  internal truth

A beauty—

without responsibility

  without god

phallic death that bleeds in imagery of death

  Christ and the devil!

  the figure on the ground

  being raised

  the human;

  he is dressed as a gallant knight

  stories, dreams—from an age of



An absorbent stillness

 rests—heavy and not to be ignored

above all the arena

near to, one might think

the throne arch great chair shaped like a bull

which Jeroboam saw, image of Jehovah sat in

‘i can’t see’ the man cries

there is no more light


a concentration of light

centered and absolute

upon the victors

(closed in a vessel of blood)

the death-wrath mask

Blue toro

The Ritual Mass Game

is merriment

a fair day, the crowd dances into the arena;

drums and plumed horns, a harness of color

the shell echoes

heat and ribaldry

under veils of shadow

the mad mask rages

When the Cathedral tower bells

ring, we lift

our hands before the illusion.

a pagan humanity, best tension

shifts the coliseum;

expecting to see blood, a vibrant color

stains the regulated chairs in shade or


steps and stiff boards

people sit upon—

the huge empty corral moves with the waking

procession, a percussion of instrument

The eyes of the animal

look out fiercely with light,

not aware of abstraction;

in another time a wreath would have surrounded

his head

in the presence of death the ancient sustenance

black in the madruga the axe lifts and women

arrive in their close shawls

to feed the life of their houses, before day

meat and bone stripped for that feeding;

he is as in another place

the corn god


before his flayed skin

 that is used

to make shoes and soles for feet, cover

the hard upper body

for bed covers and floor covers; the hooves

stained with grass caulk still boats

lying on ramps

lying in the bays

His horns

clear the sounds of morning over the fields

river barges bringing in

dense fruits gold and yellows the thick green

of other places other produce,

the bull’s horn;

air echoing with industry and exchange becomes

his ceremony

his death

 is like the flaying of corn, the shed-

skin snake, innocence of the deer

that tied up on a pole brought a first symbol of


by grace

it is the act of

an angel

with a piercing sword