He’ll leave behind dozens of books, a couple of
engravings, a green coat, one quilt, seven
shirts, and a few other objects.

—Leszek Kolakowski

You open your hand cautiously, it’s
blind and dumb. Shameless, stripped bare. Stamped,
entered in the records. Spinoza’s friends
are gone now, so are those who denied him,
and the inquisitors of his time,
and the clouds crossing the borders of his time,
and the reasons for his demise likewise no longer obtain;
his coat, quilt, and shirts now
cover no one, new books
are in new bookstores,
exiles in exile, papillary lines
in folders, barbed wire on borders, occupants in apartments,
jurors in boxes, manuscripts in desk drawers, smiles
on lips, blood in veins, workers in workplaces, soldiers
in uniforms, potatoes in stomachs, citizens
in country, documents in pockets, country
inside, foreignness outside, tongue behind teeth, prisoners
in prisons, teeth on concrete, earth in universe
(which either contracts or expands), temperature
in degrees, each in his place, heart
in throat, any questions,

thank you, I see none