Serpent Blaze

This psychedelic epic was inspired by the above excerpt from  Be Here Now  by Ram Dass, which reflects on the organic nature of metamorphosis. In other words, evolution of the soul occurs when it’s meant to occur. In my poem, the image of the serpent shedding its skin brackets the story of my own exodus from Los Angeles to my place of respite, a jewel of a town nestled between the mountains and the sea.

This psychedelic epic was inspired by the above excerpt from Be Here Now by Ram Dass, which reflects on the organic nature of metamorphosis. In other words, evolution of the soul occurs when it’s meant to occur. In my poem, the image of the serpent shedding its skin brackets the story of my own exodus from Los Angeles to my place of respite, a jewel of a town nestled between the mountains and the sea.

Before the candle’s blaze

the black glass snake

sheds its skin—

cannot be stripped by force,

must fall away,

must molt in its time

It’s true that I hailed from the desert

On blistered heels

Traveled sweet cosmic skyway

To deliver me from fast ideals


For I once bowed my head

under cranes of steel

To dodge kamikaze jet streams, a madman pilot at the wheel

And the red-eyed scrapers rose towards the sun

Obstructed holy light,

Still bearing down on everyone

Now I can see the mountains on one side

Walking on the shells that break and crust the ocean-line

Rising like a buzzard picking at the gizzards of my life

Now I wade in the fountain

Now I gaze towards the sea

Now I fall at the feet of 

My faded Eden’s memory


For I once bowed my head

under cranes of steel

To dodge kamikaze jet streams, a madman pilot at the wheel

And the red-eyed scrapers rose towards the sun

Obstructed holy light,

Still bearing down on everyone

Now I can see the mountains on one side

Walking on the shells that break and crust the ocean-line

Rising like a buzzard picking at the gizzards of my life


The serpent stares at the candle

Its skin begins to molt

Reflecting flames on the mantle

Its molten scales of life unfold

Its molten scales of life unfold