Wednesday, May 17, 2017

A Sonnet on the Jerusalem Cross

For me, the Jerusalem Cross is endlessly inspiring:  Christ before Paul; the Kingdom that’s within; the wisdom of the Buddha; William Blake and all he tried to do, say, draw, and paint; the semiotics of the endless signified and signifier; the freedom and choice in how we frame; the crosses we bare and bear; the number 5 that I somehow took as “my” number when I was a child.  Such crosses cross beyond mere prose:

               The Jerusalem Cross

Her references are kingdoms built within,
Are centers of what is, are plots of peace,
Are emanations of Blake’s Albions,
Are heavenly vistas of Jerusalems,

Are fresh imaginations testing worlds,
Are fourfold noble truths, are eight crossed paths
That frame a centered cross that wisdom bares
To study all the crosses that it bears.

Her signifiers are two crossing lines,
Four smaller pairs, too, eight paths framing round

Just four right angles centering sixteen more
That also form at most a single square--

Or four or five depending on the count.


(The cross's lines are personal as well
  In ways they interweave both "H" and "L,"
  In ways they cover Everyone with "E"
  Should some find some initials tough to see.)

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