Unio Mystica

Unio Mystica

Unio Mystica 150 150 Megan Gieske

During Catholic mass in St. Xavier’s Church,
the priest places a wafer, a flake of skin,
on my tongue as coolly as smoke rings ejected
from a murderer’s mouth. Their sacrament,

Reshma tells me singing, drags them by the hair,
or binds each limb to the bedposts, laid bare
like the silvery bottom of a mango leaf drowned
underwater, or with malarial kisses, marries them.

This sacrament is the knobs in their fingers,
knotted with the places buds have been
snapped off at the knuckles, now the bloom’s
about to break through like from rosehips.

As Reshma sings, “Jai. Jai. Jai,” she confesses
in her plastic chair beneath the chikoo tree,
her sacramental victory rises like a heart-lotus
flower, pale and mysterious, after sinking deep

into the murky waters of the mind’s own hell,
then, flowering as if to burst from the stem
of the throat, and opening into a white song
only the night lilies of Mumbai can hear.


Megan Gieske

Megan Gieske has appeared in the poetry collections Parnassus, The Asbury Review, The Crossing, and Across the Blue Grass after a nomination to the first annual Kentucky Poetry Festival in 2015. Her writing won a $10,000 grant award for Rachael Hatley to feed inner-city kids in Tulsa, OK, in 2014. More information about the She Is Noble campaign, including profiles of inspiring women like Hatley, can be found at megangieske.com. When not writing poetry, Megan is a TESOL tutor, a leader and designer of service projects in over 10 different countries, and a travel writer, most recently for semesteratsea.org.

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