The Grail Quest
Perceval almost pierced the veil,
never uttered a Christ-laced curse.
Purity of heart is to will one thing,
wrote Kierkegaard before the churchyards
turned charnel houses in excruciated Europe.
Was it a Lapis Exilis, mother meteorite,
or a lapis lazuli dish set with wished-
for cuts of fresh meat in a famine culture,
or a cup that caught the red of revelation?
Chrétien de Troyes recounted the trials,
but I trust no poet pimping a tale.
I figure the Grails were detours en route
to a single failure, and all this suffering
night after night in shining ardor,
in rosary-haunted Brocéliande,
just served to stir the gallant heart
of a Galahad to attempt and test
truth by joust, pursuing the relic, the elixir
on a pilgrim trail to the impossible castle.
As a bony boy, a squirt of a squire,
I imagined its magic in verbal terms,
an infinite inkwell, a song Sangraal,
heartsblood held in the mouth’s round
brimmed, overbrimmed, meniscal cupola.
Wondering whether my words were worthy.
I sallied forth in search of a form,
May the poem, grasped and penned, be the Grail
sustaining hearts healed for a spell,
fed in their hunger not heavenly manna
but humbly kneaded human bread.