Monday, November 2, 2015

Rituals of the longing by Tarek Chemaly, a tarot-based cyclical poetic quest

Artwork by Tarek Chemaly

0/22 The fool
The Tao will appear right under my feet
Brick by brick laid ahead
All roads lead foolishly away from home
Pregnant with possibility
It can go either way
Paths interloping on blind intersections
For now the winds are calling my name.

1 The magician
Unpluck my roots cut me in three halves
Dazzle my eyes sell me snake oil
I am a fresh convert thirsty for more
Quench my hunger with food for thought
Let me recreate cars from their door handles
Give flesh to my fleeting thoughts
Let the twists and turns give me shelter.

2 The high priestess
Wombs forever welcoming my fetus positions
Teach me time tell me static
Idéa been there before, lantern to my thoughts
Impregnate my idleness blueprint my dreams
Megaphone the untold ushroud the unsaid
Practice as an act of sharing, breaking bread
Casse croute je suis en route.

3 The impress
Seeds buried under harsh snows
Unleash my wants unfold my needs
To feel is to know to passion is to show
Daily miracles at the altar of life
Galettes dipped in morning milk
Innocence relived virginity regained
Purity unsoiled, I am just resting.

4 The emperor
Father figures spitting noisily as they shave
Never been taught yet I managed to learn
Shoes too big to fill, laughter too loud
Patterns of knowledge in quadri colors
Electrons libres perdus sans colliers
Toulouse-Lautrec cabarets and Matisse water lilies
On shores I still have yet to reach.

5 The hierophant
Edifices standing tall
Bridges connecting islands, benchmarks of comparison
Surrendering to know freedom
Bureaucracies and red velvet tapes
Everything archived and etched in the soul
Pending and in the process of
And the love will have been enough.

6 The lovers
Parce que c’est toi parce que c’est moi
Penelopes weaving shrouds and nightly loosening the stitches
Buying time at exorbitant interest rates
108 German suitors and we have become the space
Pinoy concubines with hair a la garconne
Chanel No 5 – wearing secret agents
Baklas ready for a kiss and one more for the road.

7 The chariot
Nemesis dressed as altered egos
Projected selves confused with layered identities
A lens focused on immortalized Polariods
Vision crystal clear and mission held by the reins
Never mind the blinders the horse knows the way
Everything in Aristotelian moderation, including moderation
A Paul Fort cheval “tous derriere et lui devant”.

8 Justice
A push or a pull
My intuition has a reasonable doubt
My unanimous selves declare civil wars within
Know myself myself and never bather twice in the same water
Let me be receptively forthcoming, flexibly grounded
I initiate unforcedly, deviate to remain on the path
The journey is itself the destination.

9 The hermit
Harlequin strips bare
Show me the way with Diogenes lamps
Withdraw to articulate
Downsize to appreciate
Monochrome to Technicolor
Find only to seek again
Shelter the querent to be a worthy traveler.

10 Wheel of fortune
Suspended beliefs and quests within doubts
Bigger pictures through pixels scrutinized
Change is the only constant Herr K.
Sisyphus running in squared circles
The divine is in me, let my kingdom come
To begin is an end in reverse
 The pilgrim is to himself the compass.

11 Strength
Try walking in their shoes as I carry mine
I experience the co-evolutionary change
To love is just to love one’s self
Altruistic egoism and selfish giving
Osmotic interactions via bit streams
Embrace I am only hugging myself
My step resonates like a ripple.

12 The hanged man
Sacrifice is an option
A destined choice among competing ends
A reception through passive capitulations
When le long chemin recoils and unwinds
Spiraling and ascending
Revealing strata yet unseen
Casting tall sunset shadows behind my marching frame.

13 Death
I begin again from the end
Spaghetti loops of erase and rewind
Autobahns passing through sceneries unmoving
Concede to a present where pasts and futures collided
Just a passage at a terminal
Ladies and gentlemen fasten my seatbelts
Life jackets under my seats.

14 Temperance
Balances of equidistant midways
Disparate threads wrapping in bundles
Beliefs restructured from scattered remains
Pieces falling into place with recombined meanings
Reloaded imaginings through experienced pains
Nothing is lost, nothing gained, all is channeled
Walk, never run.

15 The devil
Querdenker with oblique thoughts
Free genies from bottles but wish wisely
Nine circles of perceived wants
Small boats surfing Hokusai waves
Temptations turned mental triggers
The power I seek is the power I have
My escalator leads my purgatory.

16 The tower
La foudre strikes
Paradigms crumbling, hierarchies disintegrating
Realities over imposing on conceived notions
Best foregone alternatives in lands of diminishing marginal returns
The fire cleanses me its ashes to ashes blessing me
Cornerstones from what the builders rejected
I stand firm as my illusions flee.

17 The star
Etoile flamboyante je sème à tout vent
Give me respite, show me hope
Astral body grace me the refuge I seek
Success of failed
The happen will answer the query
The continuum pauses to hold breath
Shine in me as I pursue.

18 The moon
My engrained reflexes mirrored
Yielding a life of their own
Ripe from the weight of the gone by
Repeat cycle and press loop
Unplug, restart, reconfigure
To unlearn is to admit
This time, I follow the red bricked road.

19 The sun
Blinded by the tower, shining with the star, awakened by the moon,
To be one, yet to be one of many,
To be complete and in need of completion,
To be content yet still craving
My magnetic north suggested never imposed
The soul worthy the body coming back for more
Cent kilometres à pied ca use, ca use les souliers.

20 Judgement
Gabriel let me hear your horn
Sing me carols make a covenant with me
I am no longer guilty without being innocent
I judge and jury me and absolve and set myself free
Oh it is a perfect day for bananafish
Il y a longtemps que je m’aime jamais je ne m’oublirai
I go not to the mountain, the mountain comes to me.

21 The world
The after is before
New shape same great taste
I remember what I have always known
Cultivons le potager de Voltaire
The only true paradise is paradise lost mon petit Marcel
Let me resurrect at thirty three
Wherever I lay my hat, that’s my fool’s home.
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