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PSALM OF THE BODY

I ask You, make me know my end, why
everything that wanted to eat me, does,
and the sea still swallows the sun,
as the moon pares itself.

Everything that wanted to eat me, does.
Small hungers, wormy, busy doubling,
as the moon pares itself.
I'm the banquet and the lost music.

Small hungers, wormy, busy doubling,
they'd sing of me if they could.
I'm the banquet and the lost music,
my story in their mouths.

They'd sing of me if they could,
their song proof of me,
my story in their mouths,
diverse as stars shifting.

Their song proof of me.
Name dissolved to matter
diverse as stars shifting,
over me now, each with its moment to die.

Name dissolved to matter.
You think you've come from nothing? they ask,
over me now, each with its moment to die.
All come to this forgetting.

You think you've come from nothing? they ask.
I ask you, make me know my end, why
All come to this forgetting
And the sea still swallows the sun.

      — Allyson Shaw