The following is an excerpt from “Rimbaud’s Last Words,” which is a piece in my recently published book, Autopsy on a Ghost.

The desert fermented my soul like wine that will never be drunk. Or figs, sensual as a vampire, that rot at first contact with the gastric juices lubricating my words.

I go to more fruitful rhapsodies than my body suffered after I renounced poetry.

Abnegations more absurd than any canoe carrying a bevy of feathered natives to the seed of their nakedness.

More convulsive beauties than the most tortured artist ever colored a body cast with. Or witnessed at twilight, standing on the rock where Moses let Christ’s blood wet his upturned lips like rain.

The Semitic weed blossoms like a Christian rose on my pagan face—Allah’s gardens have too long been watered with my sweat.

You, my sister, might be happy to hear this. But dont take it for a statement of orthodox belief. My deviant heart has always questioned authority. I’m still an apostle of the wicked innocence that repudiates the self-righteous sins of our fathers. My eyes having been opened, I dont pretend now to be blind to patriarchal chicanery.

But looking on the bright side, as death not just approaches but kisses me every moment, I see the music of a radiance Paris in her gloomy sophistication never shed like healing sunrays on the ears and eyes, all the senses, of her citizens.

A single unidentified flower—I can only say it is red as a wound—blossoms by my bedside, its roots reaching deep into the soil my bones have always grown in. It is the soil whose blood runs green, easily penetrated by silence, but which literature could not comprehend when it tried to dig it.

It just didnt take to words, at least not those of logical discourse. It would rather be planted by an irrational devotion. One emanating from faces pouring chants that perfume the lips of the ancient ones, lovers of chthonic harvests, respecters of dreams.

Let me tell you some of the dreams I dreamed since I gave up poetry (or the pretense of it) . . .

(Published by empty sky press, and available on