Were you my brother or my lover more? When I raised the knife, I wasn’t thinking. All I saw when it crashed down were your strong hands caressing, your hands that were not touching me.
I saw your eyes too late.
When I came back to the frothing river where your pieces had been cast, when I begged the current to take me down into his eternal embrace along with the blood he kissed from my arms and he refused to listen—
— then, then I was thinking.
* * *
Wings beating. Hawk wings fanning the breath and flames of life back into this dead-leaf husk, feathers beat beating like a heart and lungs against the shoulders, the dry and unresponsive cheek. Urgent, gentle, strong.
And in this long-ago time, dead Osiris, stitched together, wakes.
Wings beat against his closed eyelids, his naked chest, the raw stitches that hold him back together, despite his wounds.
The breath of him rising is a grievance stirring through the bones: arching, writhing and even before his eyes open his face is streaked with tears.
His skin is carnelian, the waning sunlight shining golden upon pillars of acacia wood, and still she calls him Osiris Osiris Osiris, King and Brother.
“Why have you called me back?” His body is an agony of no and yes. “I’ve gone to the Underworld.”
And still she insists. Wings fanning fiercely, calling his slumbering cock back to life. The erection of a dead man, taut with unconsummated days and ashen promises.
* * *
He moans in an agony of — what? Of pain, or desire — of resistance — of anguish — of all the buried, exhumed, unresolved things that lie between us — old griefs that do not want to see the light—
“You don’t love me, you aren’t bringing me back for love —”
His breath rasps. I neither stop nor respond to these accusations. They may, even, partly be true.
I miss him like the sun at midnight, miss him who I have slain, want him back even in the hailstorm of his grief and mine, my tears pelting down upon his already tear-stained face.
“You hacked me apart —”
He pulls me toward him with his eyes while his arms shove me away at the same — NO —
A torrent of longing mingling with the blood of unforgiven wounds, pain that I can feel surging through his muscles and veins —
I smell honey and acacia and a man’s cock, excited —
The stitches hiss as they fall away among your discarded wrappings. Torchlight flickers orange in the dry, eternal light of a tomb, a temple hall.
In the caressing river silt, the first green shoots of summer push toward the sun.
[An illustrator, writer and polytheist for over a decade, Shirl Sazynski paints icons and tells stories rooted in mystical experience and myth. She is a frequent contributor to Eternal Haunted Summer and blogs on Slavic Paganism and Heathenry for Witches and Pagans magazine (One-Eyed Cat). Her work has appeared in several books from Bibliotheca Alexandrina, numerous literary and commercial magazines, several newspapers and galleries, and a launched computer game. She is also a professional tarot and tea-leaf reader and practicing spaekona (Norse seer). More information about her work can be found at shirlsazynski.com.]