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paul skyrm

paul skyrm, a most remarkable local poet, has been accepted to the jack kerouac school of disembodied poetics at naropa.



the ships reared over the folds of China Sea
each carrying man & jewel
towards cleaving fleet.
hollowed ancient tankers,
the oil roars & men sleep propped against
boiler room tathagata.

With no man at the helm,
the wheel spun &
the ships were caught in five armed Phantom Sea.

Six men six treasures six ships.

the vessels were hoisted immeasurable yojanas
above cumulus congestus
and driven blue-veined against P'u ­ t'o ­ Shan.
blades of tamal wood shredded the shore,
great ears of steel fell deaf,
bodies smoking strewn across mortified dirt -
gold, silver, lapis lazuli, seashell, agate & pearl sparkled.
The night sky grew confused,
thinking it stared into it's own reflection.
Miao Shan! bore of Boundless White Ray Light
tore off the lotus and herky-jerked 1,000 arms
dislocated jawbones of 10 heads,
emanated from the tuft of coarse white scruffy
between carnelian eyes
Her father's stream of white light upon the slaughtered
men of Phantom Sea.
breath again hummed it's virtuous convection current,
whirling through these six men
circling 'round & around no starting point
no ending
the feast of spilling into oneself.
She reared six men on P'u ­ t'o Shan.

When the men arose and realized they had received something
never given before
Miao Shan retreated where Her footprints had led
and much like the wind's presence is known
only when prayer flags are tossed about & Gaia wails
rumble the home we crouch inside,
the stumbling men knew they were not alone.


Got word today nine Black Wolf Coal miners trapped
in the flooded shaft of Quecreek Mine, Somerset Pennsylvania.
300 feet within Gaia
ruptured an abandoned womb whose water still gathered
though the child has been laid in mother's arms.

The mine hit was unmarked on their maps.

Heavy drills bore
six inch holes through rock & stone,
in hopes water
will flow away from Black Wolf,
petrified coal droops off bronchial trees
like bundles of cherries & gold.

a man from Deep Mine raps the metal drill with a metal mallet,
his brothers stand behind drills & drive the bit against flow.

A tapping from inside Earth tells the men to continue this excavation.

Soon Mahasthamaprapta shall evulse Black Wolves out by their napes.
Soon waters underground will break & lay down in mines.
Soon our hearts will sprout body of True Self True Name True Mind
Soon for soon shall submerge from the folds of Phantom Sea,
a seventh vessel, a seventh tanker,
BARK OF SALVATION! made of carnelian whorls
boundless light bouncing from the mast,
assiduousness never seen before
and in between, a woman robed in white silk,
carrying a white lotus rescued from the tanker belly of Lokayata Starving Ghost

and this woman shall follow the footprints that led Her,

Kuan-Yin wailing Call me by my True Name!

And we shall call you Kuan-Yin!




for soon shall emerge from the Phantom Sea a seventh vessel
a seventh tanker BARK OF SALVATION!
thus come to lift us from drowning in our own swill.
For soon shall we strike the mine not marked in our minds,
blasting through bone for imaginary loot
Mahasthamaprapta and only pillars of coal will separate roof from crown.


Like dove who streams through lighted blue
...Clenching olive tree leaf when the waters have receded and all gone down.


as dove who is freed from mortal hands,
...Unencumbered & boundless, streaks out of view over dry ground.

July 25, 2002
Aurora, Ohio

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