The Soul's Always Embarrassed
by Larry D. Thomas

by the body’s antics in the face of death,
the way it flops about, flails its limbs, and convulses;
by the glassed-in, immaculate gym where it spends its best hours,
defining pecs, calves, biceps and buttocks,

rippling its abdomen with the magic of pumped iron,
all for the illusion of an everlasting “David”
not of marble but muscle; to whom art is mere investment
and poetry the absurdity of nerds who plan to die;

a body so flawlessly philistine that only
rarely is its vacuous screen marred by the blip
of anything remotely “spiritual”; like the morning when,
staring into the mirror after a shave,

it feels something watching it, something waiting
for that momentary lapse of vanity that’ll
rivet its bedroom eyes to the first inkling
of the scarcely discernible foot of the crow.

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