Hypothesis of Flesh

soonest nathaniel


(You are an hypothesis of flesh – Frank Bidart)


The soul must learn again to leave the body it loves.

So I cut out all the fatty adjectives

and enter into the bone of the poem,

just to propound the hypothesis of flesh.


Out the light

Out the light

Into the night of childhood,

Into the dark where the mothers brood


I am driving north, which in June means driving into the womb of Venus.

I am seeking a new skin for the old ritual, I am hungry for more darkness.

The rapture has eluded me, can’t sleep no more with my eyes open,

my Jesus Prayer is said, now it is time for Wajad.


I have asked God to take my life and God said No!

Flesh rebukes spirit, flesh attempts to breakdown

the barriers between the redeemed and morbid desires.

Flesh rejects reconciliation and the spirit is forever in conflict.


Spirit watches outside the body for those who defile the dead,

Spirit watches flesh and ask, will you eat another girl?

Have you grown a tongue for boys?

What shall unchain your immortal soul?


I can’t reply, broken hallucinations becloud my mind,

smoke clogs my arteries. Yes, the fats are returning,

Again, speculation fails to satisfy notion with its buffet of reality.


I am my own thoughts, a collection of oddities, oddities of flesh.

Tonight to you, I come bare, mannequin in the nude,

craving the magic of human touch.


Oh dear traitor! Oh dear lady of solitude! Oh dear gypsy wife!

If you will, before you walk away, show me mercy;

leave fingerprints upon my flesh, heal me with your iodine.






Soonest Nathaniel is a Poet and spoken word artist. He is the author of “Teaching My Father How To Impregnate Women,” selected as winner of the 2017 RL Poetry Award. He was poet Laureate for 2014 Korea Nigeria Poetry Festival. His poems appear or are forthcoming in Rattle, Silver Blade, The Pedestal Magazine, FIYAH, Silver Blade Poetry, Northridge Review, Praxis Mag, Raven Chronicles, Wiki Column, Saraba, Loudthotz, Northridge Review, Reverbnation, Elsewhere, Scintilla, Erbacce UK, Kalahari Review, Sentinel Nigeria, and Many more.