Something You Made From Nothing

Glass bead bracelet
in left hand, bag of
black stones in 
right hand, in mouth
spring water lightly salted.  
Empty pockets.
Belt of cloth with
no metal.

At appointed time, 
spit water into fire.
After it has ceased
sizzling, slip on bracelet;
kneel upon a cut log
to count out ten black
stones from that bag.
Line them up on
a hot stone.

Stand and
remove your clothes;
burn them while marching
counterclockwise around
and around flames
ten times. When done,
put stones back in bag
and walk away naked.

What appears behind you: 

ashes:
you call them
ground
of being,
source
holy of holies.

There is also there
a meaning you didn’t have before,

a god running cover for your passage,
something you made from nothing.
Something as good
as any other 
ever made.

Then you realize

you are naked and cold
and when it starts to rain you
puzzle yourself into thinking
you missed something,
did something wrong
or backward.  But — 

a ritual done wrong
or backward that didn’t destroy 
the world? Is it possible
that you have so little power? 

The rain, as always,
comes straight down,
drenches you into
atheism.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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