Carol Hopkins

I Need To Feel You Every Moment In My Heart


For Carol

Forgive me if I tell you I am lost.

Even though you hollowed out the rock

and made a temple in my chest

my heart is still sometimes a slaughter barn

where dogs fight over ribbons of blood.

Though I have heard angels singing clear syllables

that can change a stone into a man

and bring him crying to his knees

I am lost.

So many times I have been saved by Grace

heard the ringing of invisible bells that covered the laughter of demons

and drove them away.

I have killed demons by the thousands with a sword

and baptized this world in their blood

but I don’t know for sure what my own name is.

Mother Mary smiles at me using the faces of grocery clerks.

The Mother and Father of the Universe tell me

I am their child.

But I am lost because I can’t remember every moment

in whose arms I am held.

Two times I felt a presence behind me

and turned to see a god seven feet tall

whose open face was a shotgun blast to the heart!

But twenty-three years later I come to your door

like a boy crying with a fish hook caught in his hand.

I need your help to go deeper.

I have seen Jesus Christ laughing inside an oval of light

the color of lavender.

I have seen Lord Krishna dancing in a conch shell that was clear as ice

saw him floating over the Gulf of Mexico

while seagulls mimicked his name

and mullet leapt out of waves to reach him.

But I could not reach him.

Shree Maa told me, “I am you. I am nothing.”

Shivabalayogi said to me, “I am who you are.

You can never forget your own Self.”

But every moment I don’t remember I am in love with you

is like living in a bombed city.

There is an emptiness in rooms where you have lived

then left behind

that hurts like a pulled tooth.

I need your help to go deeper.

For a long time I was afraid to give myself to you

knowing I would be eaten alive.

Now the sound of my bones snapping between your teeth

is salvation!

I want to walk in the perennial garden

and gather into my wide face the light of the sky

coming down at sunset to kiss me on the mouth

leaving my lips red as a girl’s.

I want to give back light to you like the moon.

My beard is white.

My belly like a woman’s three months pregnant

but in my heart I am a lover

I am a bridegroom with a handful of flowers.

If the one I love is Shiva

let him be the groom and I will be three months pregnant

with his child.

Take these flowers from my hand and put them in my hair.

I am talking to the God who lives in the body of Carol.

I am singing these words to my wife.

Copyright 2000 Charlie Hopkins

Charlie Hopkins is poetry editor of this website.

More about Charlie Hopkins

This page was published on May 18, 2000 and last revised on April 2, 2014.