BLOOD is my daylight, and darkness too. Blessing of night has been gouged from my cheeks Bearing with it my more lucky sight. Within those holes, for tears, fierce fire inflamed The bleeding socket as if for brain a balm – While my bright eyes died on my own palm. While played, I never doubt, God's feathered creatures, Reflected still in them, and clouds' procession; But all I felt were my blood–spattered features, Bruised gulfs in that once brillant profusion. Haw radiant lay my eyeballs in my hand, Yet from those eyes no tear could more descend! Then ever other fingers ran the warm Coagulating blood my slaughterer found By the profounder agony of holes he formed For better grip, more sensuously to wound; But me the softness of my blood enthralled, And I rejoiced as blood were red tears falling. The final light before the frightful night The lightning swooping of the polished knife, The cry too white still in my blinded sight, The bleach-white bodies of the murderers, Who stripped their torsos for their sweaty task – Was dazzling even to my blinded mask. O painful daylight, never so hard yet Or penetrating did you break the East With fiery arrow; I might have thought I shed Teardrops with leaping flames that seared my cheeks Through all that hell so many lightnings brent, So many cries of other victims rent. What time that furious conflagration fanned, All that I knew of time were callouses for eyes, Hard-grown and aching; and could hardly stand. And only then my slippery eyeballs fingered And knew – and cried: My sight, O Mother mine, is gone. How shall I wepp when your life too is done? Then dazzling daylight like a myriad carillons From endless gleaming bell-towers in my crazy Brain illumined like the lights of Zion, A lovely light – a light which sanctified – Bright birds, bright river, trees and, brilliant Boon pure as mother's milk, still brighter moon. Now came a torture I had never guessed – My murderer commanded 'Break your own eyes!' I nearly prayed for mercy to the beast, But slimy-fingered spasmic hands obeyed – And then no more I heard, no more could tell, To empty nothyng faltered, and I feel. II WITH chilly urine woke me, and with blows Belaboured fire back to my head, and then These executioners pierced our ear lobes With blunted, clumsy spikes, each one in turn – 'Laugh, laugh!' they ordered, as they thrust their tools, 'Ear–rings are fire for force-converted fools!' Then horrid laughter, sobbing, loud and wild Reverberated as if dead men laughed; But crazy humour hindered those defiled – To silence us our wilted flesh they flayed; But endless now in our long choking wit, With gaping sockets our dead sorrow wept. Then suddenly like corpses we were still (No doubt from fear lest we were still alive) – Tugged by our swollen ears they dressed us, till The silent torture turned us all awry (But birds that sang to us, not one did tire) While through our tattered lobes was drawn a wire. So each man of us if the least he starts Howls dully when he feels the frightful pain. 'Silence' - the executioner – 'we know it smarts, But we're not going to let you go again!' Not one of us could even shake his head But give another blinding pain instead.