The earth was without form, and void; 
 and darkness was on the face of the deep.
                           --Genesis 1:2

When the earth was merely a lump of phlegm 
sticky in the hollow of God’s throat, 
silence wheezed and I was born, 
dark and clean, a black breath sucked deep 
from an empty space in his lung. 

It was I who swallowed the sun, 
who woke before the orange-red blush 
ripened in the leaves of trees 
where fruit hung heavy--
I who carved the edges of the moon, 
who sharpened stars like teeth. 

Gloriously divided from light, 
I was the world’s one dark element, 
long before the shape of Man 
blinked in a red puff of clay 
and Eve’s pale-fisted body squirmed 
in the bony womb of Adam’s rib. 

* originally published in Prarie Schooner