A Bullfighter Waits with Perfect Hands

By  Frankie Drayus

after Mark Rothko’s “Orange and Yellow (1956)’


What we are made for
What we are meant for
They are not always the same thing.
It’s like passion after the alcoholic anger burns off.
It’s like waiting to be born by a mango except that you are in no hurry.
This is the kernel of darkness wrapped in fibrous light:
To defeat the walls, saturate with feeling.
In some other custody I remember:
the flicker of the word box through bars.
Da-da is often an early sound in a small mouth,
Meaningless because it is easy to utter.
“But their intentions were good.’
I call this third man father
Because it is harder to pronounce.
I call him my because I choose him, not because he is merely given.
I cannot lose him if I will not let him go.
In the dream my father lies in his own blood, gasping.
He is trying to tell me something.
We both know it is important.
We both know I could not shut the door in time.
We both know it is my fault.
Wake to the running of the bulls down your narrow street.
The bed shaking.  The sound of crystal ringing.
We are ready with sand for spilled blood.  Women.  Flowers.
The collective breath.
At the end of the corridor, a man waits with perfect hands–
A man whose hands were made
Exactly for this.



“…By saturating the room with the feeling of the work, the walls are defeated…’ – Mark Rothko quote courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago.