Baul Song for Helen

Tete d une Femme Lisant

When the evening’s dreams turned into blood
and revealed the wounds on Nero’s flute,
she undressed her soul to the winds
and set the sky ablaze with her anklets.

Night crept in through the sleeve of war
the tower of skies burnt in blue,
a thousand blades scarred the moon
and drenched the song with her purple tears.

I have smelt the glass sweat in her navel
surging with phantom prophecies;
singing Cohen in summer twilight,
awaiting a salt apocalypse.

The joker points at the ship in the painting,
drowning beneath the burning skies;
The Goddess of War in her nuclear cockpit,
flying a fighter plane above the red Ganges.

Then they saw Helen,
softly perched in her chariot of songs,
as she flew past the Kolkata sky
smoking Nazi cigarettes.

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