by Barry Friesen

The young monk rose early to jog

his appetites trailing

like cats in heat

and then a simple meal

of vegetables, raw

water, cold

and then to swim, lift a barbell, stretch

then a luxurious hot tub, sauna

his body rising, rising

and supper, early

beets and spinach and tomatoes and tuna

a long walk

a bike ride

and nothing at all for the evening

except water, cold, and tea, hot

his mind crushed itself into ice crystals

his body became beautiful, to him at least

and he opened his heart to spirit

slapping away the crows of desire

that flapped around his head

like his own shadow, attached