The Tonsure

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The nun’s beguiling hands brush my skin,
the distant touch of desire.
Before the many folded silences of his statue,
she cuts away the strands that were my life.
Now the razor is like a riot of river stones
rolling across my scalp,
the collision of bleached skulls in the infinite eaves.

With each falling strand,
I am losing my way.
How strange this feeling of heedlessness,
as though I find a kind of ecstasy
in these outspread jet-black blades,
like a cold and irretrievable lacquer folding fan.

And amidst all this loss,
the beautiful core of my desolation,
a white blossom held in the statue’s hand.
When I emerge from my tonsure,
to the cloister’s waiting mountain,
you will not recall me,
and the bald snow will caress my head
like a memory of life.

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