The Indicator x The Student: “A Sovereign / Two Bodies”

Staff Writer at The Indicator Aidan Cooper ’26 illustrates the blending of two lives.

The Indicator x The Student: “A Sovereign / Two Bodies”
This piece was originally published in “Bridges,” the Fall 2022 edition of The Indicator. Art courtesy of Sofia Yadigaroglu ’26.

“He [the king] has, or takes, the land in his natural Body, yet to this natural Body is conjoined his Body politic, which contains his royal Estate and Dignity … and these two Bodies are incorporated in one Person” - Ernst Kantorowicz

She stands before a sculpture named Look

Where she unspools twine from the knots

She loosened from her wrists the sigils

Heaving like words in a throat opened

Her Prayer like a touch and boiling

Shiver turning the dust-clouds into rain.

                   He stands before a lectern named Wash

                     Where he uncoils ribbons from the holes

                  He cut through his fingertips the callouses

                     Spinning like words in a throat opened

                    His Confession like a breath and frothing

                     Sieve turning the faucet-spit into wine.

She stands before a cabinet named Him

Where she unfastens metal from the wounds

He fashioned from his longing the edges

Dulling like words in a throat opened

Her Mouth like an end and whistling

Language turning him and her into them.

                   He stands before a maelstrom named Her

                   Where he uncovers stardust from the skin

                     She buried in her histories the diamonds

                      Thawing like words in a throat opened

                      His Arms like a wish and rippling

                    Music turning her and him into them.

          They step into a Body named Them,

          A sovereign dressed in dashes – in the

          Oneness — of blood and otherwise.

        They wash the sheets — in their creases,

          Hands like residue — they look until

          They know — all has been taken in.

       They caress the cracks — of their Body,

        Rolling – with the force of water —

          Against a charged calm of white,

        These puppet strings, these finger blades

         Melting into entropy – into thirsting skin.

         Are you hurting? Can you know me?

       Form – a dialogue of breath – that never

           Speaks in anything but wind-chimes

            I open — I am vessels — I open

          A crescendo of self — the taste of

         Salt — a latticework that pieced their

           Organs into motion — their storm

         Breaks in rearing stars and thunder —

          In the grandeur and silence of a

           Church bell falling. Wet and earning,

         They hold their Body in a singular

          Time — one unfinished, but crackling

          Like Godhood just the same.

He stands before an artist named She

                   She stands before a painting named He

          And the roil beckons, ebbs.