censer

the altar was laid
silks and velvet
silver and gold
is it a celebration
or a sacrifice
what was once had
or what is to begin
incense
floats
upward
spirals
turn
twist
arise
to
the
heavens
the bells ring
devotees enter
prayers offered
hoping they too
arise as the
clouds of incense
sweet
yet pungent
cloy yet
soothing
ahh, but wait
what do we see
upon that altar
where did that
thing come from
what is it that barely
makes a move
what are we to do
to make of this
laid on the altar
the constantly
changing, ever
shifting plume
billowing
smoke, incense
dreams, pains
hopes
shame twisted
with anger
just as the
incense releases
its fragrance
only when it
is lit by flames
this here lies
the sorry remnant
of a life
unworthy
to be lived
perhaps at last
to be of use
in some
inconsequential
manner.
bells clang
from the steeple
the smoke
rises from
the censer
hurry or you
may end up
missing this
the final act
of the final
rites
for a life
unworthy
to be lived
.
.
.
unworthy
to be lived.

[image courtesy of william weedon]

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