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Sound Of Rain Aug 2014
The gentle hum of the airplane passing by
Is loud at the beginning
But then it gets so faint that I have to strain myself to hear it.
It's there for a while and then it gets fainter and fainter,
Until it just disappears.

And when I look up at the sky,
It just looks perfectly normal and clear with no trace of the airplane
Like the airplane never flew through it,
Like it never existed,
Like the gentle hum was all just an illusion.

And that faded away plane reminds me of you,
How the sound was gentle and loud in the beginning,
Like our conversation when we first started talking,
And then it was gentle and started to fade away,
Getting fainter and fainter with every passing moment,
Exactly how you slipped away from me.

Until there was nothing left except memories.
And then I start to question whether they even existed, and
Did we really used to talk or did I just dream about that?

And now the memories are like the airplane.
Gentle and loud,
And then they get fainter,
Harder to remember,
Slipping away slowly,
Until there's nothing left.
And then you just remember the airplane vaguely but any other memories of it have faded away into nothing.
To all of those people who used to talk to me, and then they started to disappear Slowly and faded away and now they're just gone; thank you for the lessons you've taught me and for making me happy for a while. Happy Friendship Day anyways. (:
Ashvajit Mar 2012
I've never had trouble with blue;
Not the kind of trouble you'ld imagine, anyway.
Blue isn't sticky or hot,
It isn't painful, doesn't get in your way.
It might feel a bit weighty sometimes,
But no more than that.
I suppose if I was a criminal I'd be afraid of blue -
A big criminal, that is,
But being only a very small criminal, and friendly at that,
I find the blue a pretty friendly place.
And if ever I have to do an honest day's work,
Which isn't too often,
Then I find the blue
Is a good place to go afterwards to recover.
You might think that blue is difficult
To get hold of, difficult to see;
But I've never found that.
When I was very small, everything was blue,
Especially other people's eyes.
Where I lived as a boy,
The hills in springtime were covered with blue:
Millions of blue bells
Clothing the hills in glorious raiment,
Filling the woods with paeans of joy.
When I was six my mother took me
Over the hills surrounding our valley,
And suddenly, there, way down over the other side,
Very far below and a long way away,
Was the steel blue sea, vast, enormous, curved, beyond measure,
Echoing the enormity of the pale blue sky above.
There wasn't any lack
Of dark blue either in my childhood:
The night sky was pretty dark blue even though
There were a million stars.
I had no grey hairs when I discovered that blue
Lay in a kind of haze around grave stones;
It descended particularly thickly, like a kind of fog,
When my grandfather died.
Of course I assumed he'd just drifted off in it.
How I wanted to fly off into the blue myself;
But my body being much too heavy
I had to wait for dream-time,
And then there was no holding me back;
I was off into the blue like a shot.
At school, I met blue in the physics lab:
There were big fat blue sparks,
And incredible blues singing out of the spectroscope.
And when I looked through a telescope
There seemed to be an awful lot of dark blue
Between me and the moon,
Which is where I wanted to go.
We had a swimming pool at boarding school
And the water and the bottom and sides of that were blue.
I never had any problems diving into that blue pool,
Even into the end where the blue bottom
Seemed a long rippling way down.
When I got a bit older and began to notice girls,
Things got even bluer.
Especially when girls were around
But even the blue absence of girls was absorbing.
I soon found that all singers sing in blue,
And it all seemed too true.
Blue was the way things were,
The way things had to be.
What wasn't blue wasn't true.
The blue vanished for a while
When my first love showed up,
But I felt so strange without blue
That I brought her a big blue sapphire
Which dangled snugly where I had intended,
Reminding me and her
Where Truth sometimes lay
But not for long.
And when I first spent the night with a girl
I got yet another angle on blue.
When I got married, blue seemed to recede for a bit,
But after a while, blue came looking for me,
As if to say "Where have you been?"
Then I began to look at paintings,
And I noticed a lot of blue in them,
Especially in the Trés Riche Heures
Of the Duc de Berry.
The blue of those paintings
Seemed to be saying something -
Singing of freedom and joy;
This was a blue different
From the blue I'd been used to.
The blue I'd been used to was kind of blue blue;
It started somewhere in your guts
And shone right through you
And everything else, every other colour
Was kind of on top of that -
Less than blue, coming out of blue, returning to blue.
I painted in blue too.
I painted blue mountains, rank on rank,
Growing fainter and fainter into the distance
Until they disappeared into the distant blue sky
Out of which they materialized again.
It seemed to me perfectly obvious
That blue was the basic colour
Especially when one day I went up Mont Blanc
And saw that even rocks and ice and snow were blue.
One day, assisted by metal wings,
I took to the sky;
How wonderful to float in it -
To float in a vastness of pure blue
So vast that it dwarfed the broad earth;
So vast that it outstretched even the mountainous clouds
And the foam flecked blue-green sea.
I went to New Zealand to see
If the blue at the bottom of the world
Was the same as the blue at the top.
It was just the same,
But when they told me there
That I had a blue aura
I began to suspect
That I couldn't be objective about blue.
In any case, the Antipodean lasses
Made me feel as blue as I had ever felt.
Is blue really real, I thought to myself one day
As I ate a bowl full of Psilocybe mushrooms.
Half an hour later my eyes were fixed
On the blue door
And I knew it to be the doorway to Paradise.
I walked through it
And the sky outside was huge, grey-blue,
Crowded with dark blue elephants of heaven.
And standing proudly in the midst of space
Was the perfect arc of a rainbow,
And I knew that my old friend Akshobhya
Was not far away.
Even the car that we drove in was blue -
A rich, dark, velvety blue.
Years later I was in the Orient;
There the sky is a blue
Difficult to imagine
Until you have seen it.
On the island of Ceylon the blue is so blue
It seems to press down on and penetrate everything -
It's irresistible, adamantine blue.
But of course it's subtle too, that Ceylonese blue.
Sometimes it's pale, so pale that you wonder
Whether it's blue at all,
Or whether it's your own mind you're seeing.
But more often it's that rich, luminous, velvety blue
That baffles the eye and baffles the brain:
Where is the blue?
Is it near or far, inside or outside?
Now, in middle age, I have no real difficulty with blue.
My blue has become deeper and more pervasive.
It has filled my head, my lungs and my heart.
Turning towards a picture of the Buddha,
I feel the blue in and around me
Is continuous with the blue in and around Him.
"Oh yes, I went over to Edmonstoun the other day and saw Johnny, mooning around as usual! He will never make his way."
Letter of George Keats, 18--


Night falls; the great jars glow against the dark,
Dark green, dusk red, and, like a coiling snake,
Writhing eternally in smoky gyres,
Great ropes of gorgeous vapor twist and turn
Within them. So the Eastern fisherman
Saw the swart genie rise when the lead seal,
Scribbled with charms, was lifted from the jar;
And -- well, how went the tale? Like this, like this? . . .

No herbage broke the barren flats of land,
No winds dared loiter within smiling trees,
Nor were there any brooks on either hand,
Only the dry, bright sand,
Naked and golden, lay before the seas.

One boat toiled noiselessly along the deep,
The thirsty ripples dying silently
Upon its track. Far out the brown nets sweep,
And night begins to creep
Across the intolerable mirror of the sea.

Twice the nets rise, a-trail with sea-plants brown,
Distorted shells, and rocks green-mossed with slime,
Nought else. The fisher, sick at heart, kneels down;
"Prayer may appease God's frown,"
He thinks, then, kneeling, casts for the third time.

And lo! an earthen jar, bound round with brass,
Lies tangled in the cordage of his net.
About the bright waves gleam like shattered glass,
And where the sea's rim was
The sun dips, flat and red, about to set.

The prow grates on the beach. The fisherman
Stoops, tearing at the cords that bind the seal.
Shall pearls roll out, lustrous and white and wan?
Lapis? carnelian?
Unheard-of stones that make the sick mind reel

With wonder of their beauty? Rubies, then?
Green emeralds, glittering like the eyes of beasts?
Poisonous opals, good to madden men?
Gold bezants, ten and ten?
Hard, regal diamonds, like kingly feasts?

He tugged; the seal gave way. A little smoke
Curled like a feather in the darkening sky.
A blinding gush of fire burst, flamed, and broke.
A voice like a wind spoke.
Armored with light, and turbaned terribly,

A genie tramped the round earth underfoot;
His head sought out the stars, his cupped right hand
Made half the sky one darkness. He was mute.
The sun, a ripened fruit,
Drooped lower. Scarlet eddied o'er the sand.

The genie spoke: "O miserable one!
Thy prize awaits thee; come, and hug it close!
A noble crown thy draggled nets have won
For this that thou hast done.
Blessed are fools! A gift remains for those!"

His hand sought out his sword, and lightnings flared
Across the sky in one great bloom of fire.
Poised like a toppling mountain, it hung bared;
Suns that were jewels glared
Along its hilt. The air burnt like a pyre.

Once more the genie spoke: "Something I owe
To thee, thou fool, thou fool. Come, canst thou sing?
Yea? Sing then; if thy song be brave, then go
Free and released -- or no!
Find first some task, some overmastering thing
I cannot do, and find it speedily,
For if thou dost not thou shalt surely die!"

The sword whirled back. The fisherman uprose,
And if at first his voice was weak with fear
And his limbs trembled, it was but a doze,
And at the high song's close
He stood up straight. His voice rang loud and clear.


The Song.

Last night the quays were lighted;
Cressets of smoking pine
Glared o'er the roaring mariners
That drink the yellow wine.

Their song rolled to the rafters,
It struck the high stars pale,
Such worth was in their discourse,
Such wonder in their tale.

Blue borage filled the clinking cups,
The murky night grew wan,
Till one rose, crowned with laurel-leaves,
That was an outland man.

"Come, let us drink to war!" said he,
"The torch of the sacked town!
The swan's-bath and the wolf-ships,
And Harald of renown!

"Yea, while the milk was on his lips,
Before the day was born,
He took the Almayne Kaiser's head
To be his drinking-horn!

"Yea, while the down was on his chin,
Or yet his beard was grown,
He broke the gates of Micklegarth,
And stole the lion-throne!

"Drink to Harald, king of the world,
Lord of the tongue and the troth!
To the bellowing horns of Ostfriesland,
And the trumpets of the Goth!"

Their shouts rolled to the rafters,
The drink-horns crashed and rang,
And all their talk was a clangor of war,
As swords together sang!

But dimly, through the deep night,
Where stars like flowers shone,
A passionate shape came gliding --
I saw one thing alone.

I only saw my young love
Shining against the dark,
The whiteness of her raiment,
The head that bent to hark.

I only saw my young love,
Like flowers in the sun --
Her hands like waxen petals,
Where yawning poppies run.

I only felt there, chrysmal,
Against my cheek her breath,
Though all the winds were baying,
And the sky bright with Death.

Red sparks whirled up the chimney,
A hungry flaught of flame,
And a lean man from Greece arose;
Thrasyllos was his name.

"I praise all noble wines!" he cried,
"Green robes of tissue fine,
Peacocks and apes and ivory,
And Homer's sea-loud line,

"Statues and rings and carven gems,
And the wise crawling sea;
But most of all the crowns of kings,
The rule they wield thereby!

"Power, fired power, blank and bright!
A fit hilt for the hand!
The one good sword for a freeman,
While yet the cold stars stand!"

Their shouts rolled to the rafters,
The air was thick with wine.
I only knew her deep eyes,
And felt her hand in mine.

Softly as quiet water,
One finger touched my cheek;
Her face like gracious moonlight --
I might not move nor speak.

I only saw that beauty,
I only felt that form
There, in the silken darkness --
God wot my heart was warm!

Their shouts rolled to the rafters,
Another chief began;
His slit lips showed him for a ***;
He was an evil man.

"Sing to the joys of women!" he yelled,
"The hot delicious tents,
The soft couch, and the white limbs;
The air a steam of scents!"

His eyes gleamed, and he wet his lips,
The rafters shook with cheers,
As he sang of woman, who is man's slave
For all unhonored years.

"Whether the wanton laughs amain,
With one white shoulder bare,
Or in a sacked room you unbind
Some crouching maiden's hair;

"This is the only good for man,
Like spices of the South --
To see the glimmering body laid
As pasture to his mouth!

"To leave no lees within the cup,
To see and take and rend;
To lap a girl's limbs up like wine,
And laugh, knowing the end!"

Only, like low, still breathing,
I heard one voice, one word;
And hot speech poured upon my lips,
As my hands held a sword.

"Fools, thrice fools of lust!" I cried,
"Your eyes are blind to see
Eternal beauty, moving far,
More glorious than horns of war!
But though my eyes were one blind scar,
That sight is shown to me!

"You nuzzle at the ivory side,
You clasp the golden head;
Fools, fools, who chatter and sing,
You have taken the sign of a terrible thing,
You have drunk down God with your beeswing,
And broken the saints for bread!

"For God moves darkly,
In silence and in storm;
But in the body of woman
He shows one burning form.

"For God moves blindly,
In darkness and in dread;
But in the body of woman
He raises up the dead.

"Gracile and straight as birches,
Swift as the questing birds,
They fill true-lovers' drink-horns up,
Who speak not, having no words.

"Love is not delicate toying,
A slim and shimmering mesh;
It is two souls wrenched into one,
Two bodies made one flesh.

"Lust is a sprightly servant,
Gallant where wines are poured;
Love is a bitter master,
Love is an iron lord.

"Satin ease of the body,
Fattened sloth of the hands,
These and their like he will not send,
Only immortal fires to rend --
And the world's end is your journey's end,
And your stream chokes in the sands.

"Pleached calms shall not await you,
Peace you shall never find;
Nought but the living moorland
Scourged naked by the wind.

"Nought but the living moorland,
And your love's hand in yours;
The strength more sure than surety,
The mercy that endures.

"Then, though they give you to be burned,
And slay you like a stoat,
You have found the world's heart in the turn of a cheek,
Heaven in the lift of a throat.

"Although they break you on the wheel,
That stood so straight in the sun,
Behind you the trumpets split the sky,
Where the lost and furious fight goes by --
And God, our God, will have victory
When the red day is done!"

Their mirth rolled to the rafters,
They bellowed lechery;
Light as a drifting feather
My love slipped from my knee.

Within, the lights were yellow
In drowsy rooms and warm;
Without, the stabbing lightning
Shattered across the storm.

Within, the great logs crackled,
The drink-horns emptied soon;
Without, the black cloaks of the clouds
Strangled the waning moon.

My love crossed o'er the threshold --
God! but the night was murk!
I set myself against the cold,
And left them to their work.

Their shouts rolled to the rafters;
A bitterer way was mine,
And I left them in the tavern,
Drinking the yellow wine!

The last faint echoes rang along the plains,
Died, and were gone. The genie spoke: "Thy song
Serves well enough -- but yet thy task remains;
Many and rending pains
Shall torture him who dares delay too long!"

His brown face hardened to a leaden mask.
A bitter brine crusted the fisher's cheek --
"Almighty God, one thing alone I ask,
Show me a task, a task!"
The hard cup of the sky shone, gemmed and bleak.

"O love, whom I have sought by devious ways;
O hidden beauty, naked as a star;
You whose bright hair has burned across my days,
Making them lamps of praise;
O dawn-wind, breathing of Arabia!

"You have I served. Now fire has parched the vine,
And Death is on the singers and the song.
No longer are there lips to cling to mine,
And the heart wearies of wine,
And I am sick, for my desire is long.

"O love, soft-moving, delicate and tender!
In her gold house the pipe calls querulously,
They cloud with thin green silks her body slender,
They talk to her and tend her;
Come, piteous, gentle love, and set me free!"

He ceased -- and, slowly rising o'er the deep,
A faint song chimed, grew clearer, till at last
A golden horn of light began to creep
Where the dumb ripples sweep,
Making the sea one splendor where it passed.

A golden boat! The bright oars rested soon,
And the prow met the sand. The purple veils
Misting the cabin fell. Fair as the moon
When the morning comes too soon,
And all the air is silver in the dales,

A gold-robed princess stepped upon the beach.
The fisher knelt and kissed her garment's hem,
And then her lips, and strove at last for speech.
The waters lapped the reach.
"Here thy strength breaks, thy might is nought to stem!"

He cried at last. Speech shook him like a flame:
"Yea, though thou plucked the stars from out the sky,
Each lovely one would be a withered shame --
Each thou couldst find or name --
To this fire-hearted beauty!" Wearily

The genie heard. A slow smile came like dawn
Over his face. "Thy task is done!" he said.
A whirlwind roared, smoke shattered, he was gone;
And, like a sudden horn,
The moon shone clear, no longer smoked and red.

They passed into the boat. The gold oars beat
Loudly, then fainter, fainter, till at last
Only the quiet waters barely moved
Along the whispering sand -- till all the vast
Expanse of sea began to shake with heat,
And morning brought soft airs, by sailors loved.

And after? . . . Well . . .
The shop-bell clangs! Who comes?
Quinine -- I pour the little bitter grains
Out upon blue, glazed squares of paper. So.
And all the dusk I shall sit here alone,
With many powers in my hands -- ah, see
How the blurred labels run on the old jars!
***** -- and a cruel and sleepy scent,
The harsh taste of white poppies; India --
The writhing woods a-crawl with monstrous life,
Save where the deodars are set like spears,
And a calm pool is mirrored ebony;
***** -- brown and warm and slender-breasted
She rises, shaking off the cool black water,
And twisting up her hair, that ripples down,
A torrent of black water, to her feet;
How the drops sparkle in the moonlight! Once
I made a rhyme about it, singing softly:

Over Damascus every star
Keeps his unchanging course and cold,
The dark weighs like an iron bar,
The intense and pallid night is old,
Dim the moon's scimitar.

Still the lamps blaze within those halls,
Where poppies heap the marble vats
For girls to tread; the thick air palls;
And shadows hang like evil bats
About the scented walls.

The girls are many, and they sing;
Their white feet fall like flakes of snow,
Making a ceaseless murmuring --
Whispers of love, dead long ago,
And dear, forgotten Spring.

One alone sings not. Tiredly
She sees the white blooms crushed, and smells
The heavy scent. They chatter: "See!
White Zira thinks of nothing else
But the morn's jollity --

"Then Haroun takes her!" But she dreams,
Unhearing, of a certain field
Of poppies, cut by many streams,
Like lines across a round Turk shield,
Where now the hot sun gleams.

The field whereon they walked that day,
And splendor filled her body up,
And his; and then the trampled clay,
And slow smoke climbing the sky's cup
From where the village lay.

And after -- much ache of the wrists,
Where the cords irked her -- till she came,
The price of many amethysts,
Hither. And now the ultimate shame
Blew trumpet in the lists.

And so she trod the poppies there,
Remembering other poppies, too,
And did not seem to see or care.
Without, the first gray drops of dew
Sweetened the trembling air.

She trod the poppies. Hours passed
Until she slept at length -- and Time
Dragged his slow sickle. When at last
She woke, the moon shone, bright as rime,
And night's tide rolled on fast.

She moaned once, knowing everything;
Then, bitterer than death, she found
The soft handmaidens, in a ring,
Come to anoint her, all around,
That she might please the king.

***** -- and the odor dies away,
Leaving the air yet heavy -- cassia -- myrrh --
Bitter and splendid. See, the poisons come,
Trooping in squat green vials, blazoned red
With grinning skulls: strychnine, a pallid dust
Of tiny grains, like bones ground fine; and next
The muddy green of arsenic, all livid,
Likest the face of one long dead -- they creep
Along the dusty shelf like deadly beetles,
Whose fangs are carved with runnels, that the blood
May run down easily to the blind mouth
That snaps and gapes; and high above them there,
My master's pride, a cobwebbed, yellow ***
Of honey from Mount Hybla. Do the bees
Still moan among the low sweet purple clover,
Endlessly many? Still in deep-hushed woods,
When the incredible silver of the moon
Comes like a living wind through sleep-bowed branches,
Still steal dark shapes from the enchanted glens,
Which yet are purple with high dreams, and still
Fronting that quiet and eternal shield
Which is much more than Peace, does there still stand
One sharp black shadow -- and the short, smooth horns
Are clear against that disk?
O great Diana!
I, I have praised thee, yet I do not know
What moves my mind so strangely, save that once
I lay all night upon a thymy hill,
And watched the slow clouds pass like heaped-up foam
Across blue marble, till at last no speck
Blotted the clear expanse, and the full moon
Rose in much light, and all night long I saw
Her ordered progress, till, in midmost heaven,
There came a terrible silence, and the mice
Crept to their holes, the crickets did not chirp,
All the small night-sounds stopped -- and clear pure light
Rippled like silk over the universe,
Most cold and bleak; and yet my heart beat fast,
Waiting until the stillness broke. I know not
For what I waited -- something very great --
I dared not look up to the sky for fear
A brittle crackling should clash suddenly
Against the quiet, and a black line creep
Across the sky, and widen like a mouth,
Until the broken heavens streamed apart,
Like torn lost banners, and the immortal fires,
Roaring like lions, asked their meat from God.
I lay there, a black blot upon a shield
Of quivering, watery whiteness. The hush held
Until I staggered up and cried aloud,
And then it seemed that something far too great
For knowledge, and illimitable as God,
Rent th
PK Wakefield Apr 2012
fainter ever miles spreads ever fainter
ever farther miles of cool darkness
unfurl fainter colours ever fainter colours
ever deeper darkness ever darker deeper
darkness
                     and fathoms

                                                 and fathoms

                        ever
BOOK I

S.  Patrick. You who are bent, and bald, and blind,
With a heavy heart and a wandering mind,
Have known three centuries, poets sing,
Of dalliance with a demon thing.

Oisin. Sad to remember, sick with years,
The swift innumerable spears,
The horsemen with their floating hair,
And bowls of barley, honey, and wine,
Those merry couples dancing in tune,
And the white body that lay by mine;
But the tale, though words be lighter than air.
Must live to be old like the wandering moon.

Caoilte, and Conan, and Finn were there,
When we followed a deer with our baying hounds.
With Bran, Sceolan, and Lomair,
And passing the Firbolgs' burial-motmds,
Came to the cairn-heaped grassy hill
Where passionate Maeve is stony-still;
And found On the dove-grey edge of the sea
A pearl-pale, high-born lady, who rode
On a horse with bridle of findrinny;
And like a sunset were her lips,
A stormy sunset on doomed ships;
A citron colour gloomed in her hair,

But down to her feet white vesture flowed,
And with the glimmering crimson glowed
Of many a figured embroidery;
And it was bound with a pearl-pale shell
That wavered like the summer streams,
As her soft ***** rose and fell.

S.  Patrick. You are still wrecked among heathen dreams.

Oisin. "Why do you wind no horn?' she said
"And every hero droop his head?
The hornless deer is not more sad
That many a peaceful moment had,
More sleek than any granary mouse,
In his own leafy forest house
Among the waving fields of fern:
The hunting of heroes should be glad.'

'O pleasant woman,' answered Finn,
"We think on Oscar's pencilled urn,
And on the heroes lying slain
On Gabhra's raven-covered plain;
But where are your noble kith and kin,
And from what country do you ride?'

"My father and my mother are
Aengus and Edain, my own name
Niamh, and my country far
Beyond the tumbling of this tide.'

"What dream came with you that you came
Through bitter tide on foam-wet feet?
Did your companion wander away
From where the birds of Aengus wing?'
Thereon did she look haughty and sweet:
"I have not yet, war-weary king,
Been spoken of with any man;
Yet now I choose, for these four feet
Ran through the foam and ran to this
That I might have your son to kiss.'

"Were there no better than my son
That you through all that foam should run?'

"I loved no man, though kings besought,
Until the Danaan poets brought
Rhyme that rhymed upon Oisin's name,
And now I am dizzy with the thought
Of all that wisdom and the fame
Of battles broken by his hands,
Of stories builded by his words
That are like coloured Asian birds
At evening in their rainless lands.'

O Patrick, by your brazen bell,
There was no limb of mine but fell
Into a desperate gulph of love!
'You only will I wed,' I cried,
"And I will make a thousand songs,
And set your name all names above,
And captives bound with leathern thongs
Shall kneel and praise you, one by one,
At evening in my western dun.'

"O Oisin, mount by me and ride
To shores by the wash of the tremulous tide,
Where men have heaped no burial-mounds,
And the days pass by like a wayward tune,
Where broken faith has never been known
And the blushes of first love never have flown;
And there I will give you a hundred hounds;
No mightier creatures bay at the moon;
And a hundred robes of murmuring silk,
And a hundred calves and a hundred sheep
Whose long wool whiter than sea-froth flows,
And a hundred spears and a hundred bows,
And oil and wine and honey and milk,
And always never-anxious sleep;
While a hundred youths, mighty of limb,
But knowing nor tumult nor hate nor strife,
And a hundred ladies, merry as birds,
Who when they dance to a fitful measure
Have a speed like the speed of the salmon herds,
Shall follow your horn and obey your whim,
And you shall know the Danaan leisure;
And Niamh be with you for a wife.'
Then she sighed gently, "It grows late.
Music and love and sleep await,
Where I would be when the white moon climbs,
The red sun falls and the world grows dim.'

And then I mounted and she bound me
With her triumphing arms around me,
And whispering to herself enwound me;
He shook himself and neighed three times:
Caoilte, Conan, and Finn came near,
And wept, and raised their lamenting hands,
And bid me stay, with many a tear;
But we rode out from the human lands.
In what far kingdom do you go'
Ah Fenians, with the shield and bow?
Or are you phantoms white as snow,
Whose lips had life's most prosperous glow?
O you, with whom in sloping vallcys,
Or down the dewy forest alleys,
I chased at morn the flying deer,
With whom I hurled the hurrying spear,
And heard the foemen's bucklers rattle,
And broke the heaving ranks of battle!
And Bran, Sceolan, and Lomair,
Where are you with your long rough hair?
You go not where the red deer feeds,
Nor tear the foemen from their steeds.

S.  Patrick. Boast not, nor mourn with drooping head
Companions long accurst and dead,
And hounds for centuries dust and air.

Oisin. We galloped over the glossy sea:
I know not if days passed or hours,
And Niamh sang continually
Danaan songs, and their dewy showers
Of pensive laughter, unhuman sound,
Lulled weariness, and softly round
My human sorrow her white arms wound.
We galloped; now a hornless deer
Passed by us, chased by a phantom hound
All pearly white, save one red ear;
And now a lady rode like the wind
With an apple of gold in her tossing hand;
And a beautiful young man followed behind
With quenchless gaze and fluttering hair.
"Were these two born in the Danaan land,
Or have they breathed the mortal air?'

"Vex them no longer,' Niamh said,
And sighing bowed her gentle head,
And sighing laid the pearly tip
Of one long finger on my lip.

But now the moon like a white rose shone
In the pale west, and the sun'S rim sank,
And clouds atrayed their rank on rank
About his fading crimson ball:
The floor of Almhuin's hosting hall
Was not more level than the sea,
As, full of loving fantasy,
And with low murmurs, we rode on,
Where many a trumpet-twisted shell
That in immortal silence sleeps
Dreaming of her own melting hues,
Her golds, her ambers, and her blues,
Pierced with soft light the shallowing deeps.
But now a wandering land breeze came
And a far sound of feathery quires;
It seemed to blow from the dying flame,
They seemed to sing in the smouldering fires.
The horse towards the music raced,
Neighing along the lifeless waste;
Like sooty fingers, many a tree
Rose ever out of the warm sea;
And they were trembling ceaselessly,
As though they all were beating time,
Upon the centre of the sun,
To that low laughing woodland rhyme.
And, now our wandering hours were done,
We cantered to the shore, and knew
The reason of the trembling trees:
Round every branch the song-birds flew,
Or clung thereon like swarming bees;
While round the shore a million stood
Like drops of frozen rainbow light,
And pondered in a soft vain mood
Upon their shadows in the tide,
And told the purple deeps their pride,
And murmured snatches of delight;
And on the shores were many boats
With bending sterns and bending bows,
And carven figures on their prows
Of bitterns, and fish-eating stoats,
And swans with their exultant throats:
And where the wood and waters meet
We tied the horse in a leafy clump,
And Niamh blew three merry notes
Out of a little silver trump;
And then an answering whispering flew
Over the bare and woody land,
A whisper of impetuous feet,
And ever nearer, nearer grew;
And from the woods rushed out a band
Of men and ladies, hand in hand,
And singing, singing all together;
Their brows were white as fragrant milk,
Their cloaks made out of yellow silk,
And trimmed with many a crimson feather;
And when they saw the cloak I wore
Was dim with mire of a mortal shore,
They fingered it and gazed on me
And laughed like murmurs of the sea;
But Niamh with a swift distress
Bid them away and hold their peace;
And when they heard her voice they ran
And knelt there, every girl and man,
And kissed, as they would never cease,
Her pearl-pale hand and the hem of her dress.
She bade them bring us to the hall
Where Aengus dreams, from sun to sun,
A Druid dream of the end of days
When the stars are to wane and the world be done.

They led us by long and shadowy ways
Where drops of dew in myriads fall,
And tangled creepers every hour
Blossom in some new crimson flower,
And once a sudden laughter sprang
From all their lips, and once they sang
Together, while the dark woods rang,
And made in all their distant parts,
With boom of bees in honey-marts,
A rumour of delighted hearts.
And once a lady by my side
Gave me a harp, and bid me sing,
And touch the laughing silver string;
But when I sang of human joy
A sorrow wrapped each merry face,
And, patrick! by your beard, they wept,
Until one came, a tearful boy;
"A sadder creature never stept
Than this strange human bard,' he cried;
And caught the silver harp away,
And, weeping over the white strings, hurled
It down in a leaf-hid, hollow place
That kept dim waters from the sky;
And each one said, with a long, long sigh,
"O saddest harp in all the world,
Sleep there till the moon and the stars die!'

And now, still sad, we came to where
A beautiful young man dreamed within
A house of wattles, clay, and skin;
One hand upheld his beardless chin,
And one a sceptre flashing out
Wild flames of red and gold and blue,
Like to a merry wandering rout
Of dancers leaping in the air;
And men and ladies knelt them there
And showed their eyes with teardrops dim,
And with low murmurs prayed to him,
And kissed the sceptre with red lips,
And touched it with their finger-tips.
He held that flashing sceptre up.
"Joy drowns the twilight in the dew,
And fills with stars night's purple cup,
And wakes the sluggard seeds of corn,
And stirs the young kid's budding horn,
And makes the infant ferns unwrap,
And for the peewit paints his cap,
And rolls along the unwieldy sun,
And makes the little planets run:
And if joy were not on the earth,
There were an end of change and birth,
And Earth and Heaven and Hell would die,
And in some gloomy barrow lie
Folded like a frozen fly;
Then mock at Death and Time with glances
And wavering arms and wandering dances.

"Men's hearts of old were drops of flame
That from the saffron morning came,
Or drops of silver joy that fell
Out of the moon's pale twisted shell;
But now hearts cry that hearts are slaves,
And toss and turn in narrow caves;
But here there is nor law nor rule,
Nor have hands held a weary tool;
And here there is nor Change nor Death,
But only kind and merry breath,
For joy is God and God is joy.'
With one long glance for girl and boy
And the pale blossom of the moon,
He fell into a Druid swoon.

And in a wild and sudden dance
We mocked at Time and Fate and Chance
And swept out of the wattled hall
And came to where the dewdrops fall
Among the foamdrops of the sea,
And there we hushed the revelry;
And, gathering on our brows a frown,
Bent all our swaying bodies down,
And to the waves that glimmer by
That sloping green De Danaan sod
Sang, "God is joy and joy is God,
And things that have grown sad are wicked,
And things that fear the dawn of the morrow
Or the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

We danced to where in the winding thicket
The damask roses, bloom on bloom,
Like crimson meteors hang in the gloom.
And bending over them softly said,
Bending over them in the dance,
With a swift and friendly glance
From dewy eyes:  "Upon the dead
Fall the leaves of other roses,
On the dead dim earth encloses:
But never, never on our graves,
Heaped beside the glimmering waves,
Shall fall the leaves of damask roses.
For neither Death nor Change comes near us,
And all listless hours fear us,
And we fear no dawning morrow,
Nor the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

The dance wound through the windless woods;
The ever-summered solitudes;
Until the tossing arms grew still
Upon the woody central hill;
And, gathered in a panting band,
We flung on high each waving hand,
And sang unto the starry broods.
In our raised eyes there flashed a glow
Of milky brightness to and fro
As thus our song arose:  "You stars,
Across your wandering ruby cars
Shake the loose reins:  you slaves of God.
He rules you with an iron rod,
He holds you with an iron bond,
Each one woven to the other,
Each one woven to his brother
Like bubbles in a frozen pond;
But we in a lonely land abide
Unchainable as the dim tide,
With hearts that know nor law nor rule,
And hands that hold no wearisome tool,
Folded in love that fears no morrow,
Nor the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

O Patrick! for a hundred years
I chased upon that woody shore
The deer, the badger, and the boar.
O patrick! for a hundred years
At evening on the glimmering sands,
Beside the piled-up hunting spears,
These now outworn and withered hands
Wrestled among the island bands.
O patrick! for a hundred years
We went a-fishing in long boats
With bending sterns and bending bows,
And carven figures on their prows
Of bitterns and fish-eating stoats.
O patrick! for a hundred years
The gentle Niamh was my wife;
But now two things devour my life;
The things that most of all I hate:
Fasting and prayers.

S.  Patrick. Tell On.

Oisin. Yes, yes,
For these were ancient Oisin's fate
Loosed long ago from Heaven's gate,
For his last days to lie in wait.
When one day by the tide I stood,
I found in that forgetfulness
Of dreamy foam a staff of wood
From some dead warrior's broken lance:
I tutned it in my hands; the stains
Of war were on it, and I wept,
Remembering how the Fenians stept
Along the blood-bedabbled plains,
Equal to good or grievous chance:
Thereon young Niamh softly came
And caught my hands, but spake no word
Save only many times my name,
In murmurs, like a frighted bird.
We passed by woods, and lawns of clover,
And found the horse and bridled him,
For we knew well the old was over.
I heard one say, "His eyes grow dim
With all the ancient sorrow of men';
And wrapped in dreams rode out again
With hoofs of the pale findrinny
Over the glimmering purple sea.
Under the golden evening light,
The Immortals moved among thc fountains
By rivers and the woods' old night;
Some danced like shadows on the mountains
Some wandered ever hand in hand;
Or sat in dreams on the pale strand,
Each forehead like an obscure star
Bent down above each hooked knee,
And sang, and with a dreamy gaze
Watched where the sun in a saffron blaze
Was slumbering half in the sea-ways;
And, as they sang, the painted birds



























































­

























Kept time with their bright wings and feet;
Like drops of honey came their words,
But fainter than a young lamb's bleat.

"An old man stirs the fire to a blaze,
In the house of a child, of a friend, of a brother.
He has over-lingered his welcome; the days,
Grown desolate, whisper and sigh to each other;
He hears the storm in the chimney above,
And bends to the fire and shakes with the cold,
While his heart still dreams of battle and love,
And the cry of the hounds on the hills of old.

But We are apart in the grassy places,
Where care cannot trouble the least of our days,
Or the softness of youth be gone from our faces,
Or love's first tenderness die in our gaze.
The hare grows old as she plays in the sun
And gazes around her with eyes of brightness;
Before the swift things that she dreamed of were done
She limps along in an aged whiteness;
A storm of birds in the Asian trees
Like tulips in the air a-winging,
And the gentle waves of the summer seas,
That raise their heads and wander singing,
Must murmur at last, ""Unjust, unjust';
And ""My speed is a weariness,' falters the mouse,
And the kingfisher turns to a ball of dust,
And the roof falls in of his tunnelled house.
But the love-dew dims our eyes till the day
When God shall come from the Sea with a sigh
And bid the stars drop down from the sky,
And the moon like a pale rose wither away.'

#######
BOOK II
#######

NOW, man of croziers, shadows called our names
And then away, away, like whirling flames;
And now fled by, mist-covered, without sound,
The youth and lady and the deer and hound;
"Gaze no more on the phantoms,' Niamh said,
And kissed my eyes, and, swaying her bright head
And her bright body, sang of faery and man
Before God was or my old line began;
Wars shadowy, vast, exultant; faeries of old
Who wedded men with rings of Druid gold;
And how those lovers
loveless Jul 2016
Knock knock

"Anyone there?" he heard someone saying it while knocking at the door. That one knocking the door had a voice of a child. The voice was soft and with this the old man inside the house guessed the age of child to be probably five to six years.

"Hellooo" the kid said again. He was continuously knocking the door.

Child continued to knock for a little while.

"I know you are inside there, please respond"
Child said pleadingly.

"Go away, no one is here" the old man said furiously. He was frustrated.

"Oh! Here you are" child responded "Dr Adam, I need help, I am..." the child couldn't complete the sentence, and the old man's heard a thud which was supposedly bigger than a knock. Possibly his head had banged against the door. Something had happened, the old man knew.

The old man was a loner but he wasn't heartless to not check on the kid. He bookmarked the page and kept the book he was reading on the table. He stood up and started to walk towards the door. He put down the chain and then opened the door slowly.

The child was holding on the door. As the old man opened the door the child could barely keep standing for some moments and he started to fall near the man's legs. Old man was quick and he put his hand below the child so he couldn't fall on the floor.

The old man grasped the hand of the boy to check his pulse. The boy was still alive though there was something weird about his pulse. It was weak, he could barely sense it and the pulse was low to around forty per minute. He was still breathing. The child was unconscious.

The old man grasped that kid in his arms and took him to his bedroom, situated upstairs on right corner of the house. He placed that kid on the bed which was still as fluffy as a new bed would be. It's been years since that old man was back to his bedroom. He used to sleep mostly in his chair while reading. He placed pillow under the kid's head and went back downstairs to other room.

That room didn't looked like a room, it looked more like a library. The room was large and there were books everywhere. His hand written notes and research was all scattered in the room. And the old man grasped they book he left on the table and continued reading.

Some hours passed and the old man heard the door opening upstairs. The child had woken up, he knew. The old man grabbed some fruits lying in the basket and went upstairs. The kid was just out of the room.

"Hey kid, you can still rest a little, and if you don't want to rest, you can have these fruits and go"

"Dr. Adam!?"

"Yes"

"I'm dying."

The old man was speechless as he heard these words from that little child. Many patients had come to him before, knocking on his door, to help them but he had left his profession because of one accident. All of them had to go back. He didn't even opened his door to anyone before. But now he had a child in front of him, who said he was dying and this left the old man speechless.

"Go to the hospital kid, I can't help you. I do not operate anymore"

"I went to the hospital. The disease I have have no cure. Not a single of them can cure me"

"Then how do you think I'd be able to cure you?"

"My disease makes my heart weaker by the moment it beats"

The old man knew this disease. All he could do was just stare at that kid and listen to him.

"They told me that long ago, a genius researched upon something and came across a cure to everything. And in that time, a kid had the same disease as me. He could die anytime. That genius used his talents to give that kid a new life. He cured that child and that child lived for a day but something happened and the disease of kid returned. This time, a million time worse and the kid died."

A silence followed after the kid.

"That genius was you Dr Adam . You had saved that kid before, even for just some days, but only you were the one to be able to find its cure. Save me doctor. Save me."

"I... I can't..." for the first time in years, the old man was not rude. His voice was trembling. In his eyes was fear. His north had dried up. He couldn't speak another word.

He was taken aback. He was looking in the eyes of that kid and in those little eyes of that kid was hope. Blue eyes of that kid were same as that of Nicholas, that kid the old man failed to save life of.

And the old man went to a state of trance and started to wonder in the memories thirty years back.

He was young back then. He was a genius. He learned to speak when he was just six months old. At three he used to solve maths problems easily that were hard for child double his age. His parents knew he was talented and so they gave him best education they could. He completed his doctorate degree at the age of seventeen when most of the people his age would be looking for what to do. He was a prodigy.

He joined a hospital. And started to operate on people. The operations that looked hard to normal one, he was able to do without a sweat. He wanted to do more. And so he got a home for himself where he could work in peace. He started on researching the cure of everything. He would think, search and experimented alone.

One morning, two years later, he found that any disease can be cured using magic. The magic that provides energy and makes life energy so strong that the body itself heals itself.

He was happy that day. He went to hospital to break out the news to everyone. But on his way, he found a small kid, of five years, laying on the bed.

"Hey kid" he said to the child.

"Hello doctor..."

"My name is Adam. What's your name"

"I'm Nicholas, doctor Adam"

"What happened to you Nicholas"

"I don't know."

"Don't worry, you'll be alright. I promise you"

"Thank you Dr Adam" the child smiled. That smile was so full of feelings that it made Adam more happy from inside. That smile had touched his heart. He just wanted to make that kid more happy by curing him of whatever he had. He made a promise to himself that he would cure that kid before telling upon his research to everyone.

He ran across the hospital and went to the other room where the doctors handling the patients of that room were.

"Hey Robert"

"Hello sir" though Robert was ten years older than Adam but still he used to call Adam sir because Adam was a lot more senior than him because of his knowledge.

"Whats up with Nicholas"

"That small boy"

"Yes"

"Actually, we don't know anything yet"

"What?"

"We've never seen such disease yet"

"What is with that disease"

"His heart is losing strength by the moment it beats. A severe pain was in his heart for unknown reasons pops up whenever. And he sometimes loses his consciousness at random times. That's one of a kind case. He can die at any time."

The young prodigy was speechless for the first time. His thoughts took him to another world. He was broken because he thought he couldn't help that kid. And then he heard a scream coming from the same place Nicholas was in.

He ran back to there. Nicholas was holding his heart with one hand and screaming. The pain was immense. Beyond measure of one's imagination. The eyes were flooded with tears. This view shocked Adam. He had never heard anyone shriek that loud in his whole life.

He went near Nicholas and held him up in his arms. He hugged him close and said that everything will be alright. The child's voice somehow lowered. After some moments, that. stopped crying and just stayed in his arms.

"Save me Dr Adam! Save me" the kid said sobbingly and then collapsed under his hands and got unconscious.

For the first time in his life the doctor felt helpless. He realized how precious life was. And he could not help that kid. The young man started crying. And suddenly a bright idea struck his mind. He thought of using the magic he researched for to cure this child.

"I will save you kiddo, I definitely will" he said to that small kid and then turned to Robert who had followed him

"Robert, can you take him to the operating table please"

"Yes but first tell me what are you going to do"

"I will tell you later. Just trust me and take him to there" Adam gave that kid to Robert and started to go out "I need to go back home for a bit. I'll be back quick" he said to Robert hurriedly and ran back to home. He needed to see the procedure again. He didn't wanted to do any mistake. Though he had not done any experiment to any animal, he was still confident in his research.

He came back to home, took out some notes of his from his book and started to read them. Then after some minutes, he ran back to hospital along with those notes. He just went to the room where the kid was. Robert was there near the table and the child still knocked unconscious and laying on the operating table.

"Thank you Robert. Can you please leave us alone now"

"But what are you going to do now?"

"Cure him"

"But how?"

"I can't tell you now but I will surely cure him"

Robert was still reluctant but he knew that Adam may have come up with some way of curing that child

"Trust me, I will surely" Adam said

And with that Robert finally left from there.

The doctor begin the procedure and he placed his palm on the child's heart tenderly. Then he closed his eyes and then had his other hand up. The other hand was open like he was gathering something from sky inside his hand. He was channeling the energy of the universe too the life energy of the kid.

The man could feel it running through his body. It was like the kid's energy was faint green in color and the energy in his hand was vibrant blue which was intense. The blue energy went from his hand to the other hand was going to the child's energy and making it stronger. But Adam didn't knew why there were two colors of energy. There was something wrong, he felt but nevertheless he continued to channel. Gradually the energy inside kid began to grow and it was full again. Like the color of child's energy was not blue but with little faint green inside.

Adam withdrew his hand. Nicholas was still breathing and seemed to be in good shape. Adam knew he was successful but he knew something,even if it were a little thing, had been wrong. And he sank back in the chair nearby.

After some moments the kid opened his eyes and sat on the table

"How are you feeling kiddo?" he asked standing from chair

"I... I feel... I feel fine doctor" Nicholas said. He was touching his heart like he was wondering what happened. He felt better than before. He felt that he is all alright.

"I feel good doctor" Nicholas said "I feel great" he added. He had a smile on his face. He felt rejuvenated. He was happy. Adam had a sigh of relief.

"How did you do it doctor?"

"Do what?"

"Cure me. How did you cure me? They said that my disease couldn't be cured by any medicine or surgery"

"Well...." Adam didn't knew what to say

"Tell me please. How did you?"

"Magic" and Adam smiled. He had told the truth though Nicholas didn't thought it was truth. This made nicholas laugh.

"Thank you... My magician" and they both started to laugh again. They both were happy.

"Come on now. Let me take you to your bed" and he grasped Nicholas in his arms and took him to his bed.

"I want to go home, not this bed"

"We still need to keep you under observation for a while still kiddo. So be a good boy"

"Ok magician, I will be a good boy"

Robert was there. Looking for other patients. He looked at the boy and observed him. He saw no marks, and realized surgery or something had not been done. And he later real used that pulse of the kid was normal now. And the child was smiling.

"How did you did that sir?" he asked Adam

"Ask the kid, he knows" and Robert looked at the kid

"He did magic doctor" and they both started to laugh while Robert looked puzzled. But Robert knew that the prodigy must have made some discovery and that's how he cured him and Adam want to give surprise to others.

"Congrats magician" Robert joined them.

"Robert can you help me in observing this child. I want to make sure he is all alright"

"I will sir" Robert said

They both did some tests that day along with looking after other patients. The strength of the heart of that boy had returned and heart beat was normal with no pain burst or unconsciousness for whole day.

Adam said final good night to the kid and went to his home to get some rest after informing Nicholas they he will be discharged tomorrow.

Adam dozed off to sleep quick that night. But he had a nightmare. He saw those two energies blue and faint green that were slowly disappearing. Darkness was consuming them both as they mixed. And then there was complete darkness. He heard a terrible scream of pain an then he woke up.

He couldn't wait there. He had to go back to hospital to check on Nicholas again. He dressed quick and ran to hospital. The was doctor Jack at night duty near the bed of that kid.

And that kid was laying silent. Adam held his hand. But he felt nothing. He then tried to feel heart beats but nothing again.

"What happened here?" Adam asked furiously to Jack

"Some minutes ago, we hard a loud scream for just a second or two and we realized it was Nicholas. By the time we reached here, it was all over. His heart had stopped beating"

"No that can't be" Adam said. How heart had broke.

"That disease had no cure Adam. At least you tried" Jack said

"No I should have been able to save him, I could have if I knew more, I could have" the tears of Adam flowed like an endless river of grief.

He left his profession that day. He wanted to search for the answers. He wanted to perfect his magic. He wanted not to let someone else die like that kid again. He made his home a library. He got many books. He kept on studying. He studied so much that many times he forgot to eat for days. Some books he wrote himself while researching upon. And so years passed. Life went on till today when a little child knocked his door.

His state of trance was broken by the scream of that little kid. He was holding his heart as the same way Nicholas did when he was in pain. Adam got himself and got that little boy on bed again. Kid stopped to cry after a little while. When kid had a breath of relief, he said to the old man again

"Dr Adam, I do not have much time left. Please. Help me"

"I have not finished that research yet. I may need more years to finish that cure of everything"

"I do not have years, I may not even have today and you know it"

"Kid, you may meet same fate as that kid. My procedure somehow accelerated that disease because it was wrong"

"I have to die one day if it's a week or I am left with a day after the procedure. It won't matter. I have to die anyway"

"But..." he couldn't say anything more. The child was wise and he was saying up to point.

"Can you please just try. I promise I won't regret it"

Even though thirty years had passed. Adam had made little progression towards that cure to everything. In the meantime he had found out many cures of many other diseases that was thought to be incurable but Adam wanted to perfect his procedure of cure of everything.

"Are you sure?"

"Dead sure" the kid replied. They both laughed a little on that pun.

"Get some rest. I'll be back in a bit"

He was going to do that again. He was going to use magic again. He went downstairs and started to read as much as he can of his notes. He wanted to do it perfect this time. Though he didn't knew how. After some time he went back upstairs.

"Hello again" the child said

"Are you ready kiddo?"

"I am. And by the way, my name is Nick"

"You're still kiddo for me" and they both laughed.

"Lay on the bed and don't move or say anything. Just close your eyes. I'm going to do magic"

"Ok magician" boy said. He was so much alike to Nicholas, Adam thought.

Nick did what he was told. The old man placed one hand on the boy's heart and other hand in exact same position as before years ago. He could feel the energies as he closed his eyes. The energy of the boy was faint green again. And a little more fainter than Nicholas when he was on the operating table that night. Adam felt the same blue energy in his other hand. No he thought. He couldn't put that blue energy again inside that boy. He knew the consequence. He searched for the same green one in outside universe but he couldn't. And then he heard.

"Dr Adam"

It was
I'm too lazy to add all the details in the story. Maybe one day I'll detail it.
I

Out of the little chapel I burst
Into the fresh night-air again.
Five minutes full, I waited first
In the doorway, to escape the rain
That drove in gusts down the common’s centre
At the edge of which the chapel stands,
Before I plucked up heart to enter.
Heaven knows how many sorts of hands
Reached past me, groping for the latch
Of the inner door that hung on catch
More obstinate the more they fumbled,
Till, giving way at last with a scold
Of the crazy hinge, in squeezed or tumbled
One sheep more to the rest in fold,
And left me irresolute, standing sentry
In the sheepfold’s lath-and-plaster entry,
Six feet long by three feet wide,
Partitioned off from the vast inside—
I blocked up half of it at least.
No remedy; the rain kept driving.
They eyed me much as some wild beast,
That congregation, still arriving,
Some of them by the main road, white
A long way past me into the night,
Skirting the common, then diverging;
Not a few suddenly emerging
From the common’s self through the paling-gaps,
—They house in the gravel-pits perhaps,
Where the road stops short with its safeguard border
Of lamps, as tired of such disorder;—
But the most turned in yet more abruptly
From a certain squalid knot of alleys,
Where the town’s bad blood once slept corruptly,
Which now the little chapel rallies
And leads into day again,—its priestliness
Lending itself to hide their beastliness
So cleverly (thanks in part to the mason),
And putting so cheery a whitewashed face on
Those neophytes too much in lack of it,
That, where you cross the common as I did,
And meet the party thus presided,
“Mount Zion” with Love-lane at the back of it,
They front you as little disconcerted
As, bound for the hills, her fate averted,
And her wicked people made to mind him,
Lot might have marched with Gomorrah behind him.

II

Well, from the road, the lanes or the common,
In came the flock: the fat weary woman,
Panting and bewildered, down-clapping
Her umbrella with a mighty report,
Grounded it by me, wry and flapping,
A wreck of whalebones; then, with a snort,
Like a startled horse, at the interloper
(Who humbly knew himself improper,
But could not shrink up small enough)
—Round to the door, and in,—the gruff
Hinge’s invariable scold
Making my very blood run cold.
Prompt in the wake of her, up-pattered
On broken clogs, the many-tattered
Little old-faced peaking sister-turned-mother
Of the sickly babe she tried to smother
Somehow up, with its spotted face,
From the cold, on her breast, the one warm place;
She too must stop, wring the poor ends dry
Of a draggled shawl, and add thereby
Her tribute to the door-mat, sopping
Already from my own clothes’ dropping,
Which yet she seemed to grudge I should stand on:
Then, stooping down to take off her pattens,
She bore them defiantly, in each hand one,
Planted together before her breast
And its babe, as good as a lance in rest.
Close on her heels, the dingy satins
Of a female something past me flitted,
With lips as much too white, as a streak
Lay far too red on each hollow cheek;
And it seemed the very door-hinge pitied
All that was left of a woman once,
Holding at least its tongue for the *****.
Then a tall yellow man, like the Penitent Thief,
With his jaw bound up in a handkerchief,
And eyelids ******* together tight,
Led himself in by some inner light.
And, except from him, from each that entered,
I got the same interrogation—
“What, you the alien, you have ventured
To take with us, the elect, your station?
A carer for none of it, a Gallio!”—
Thus, plain as print, I read the glance
At a common prey, in each countenance
As of huntsman giving his hounds the tallyho.
And, when the door’s cry drowned their wonder,
The draught, it always sent in shutting,
Made the flame of the single tallow candle
In the cracked square lantern I stood under,
Shoot its blue lip at me, rebutting
As it were, the luckless cause of scandal:
I verily fancied the zealous light
(In the chapel’s secret, too!) for spite
Would shudder itself clean off the wick,
With the airs of a Saint John’s Candlestick.
There was no standing it much longer.
“Good folks,” thought I, as resolve grew stronger,
“This way you perform the Grand-Inquisitor
When the weather sends you a chance visitor?
You are the men, and wisdom shall die with you,
And none of the old Seven Churches vie with you!
But still, despite the pretty perfection
To which you carry your trick of exclusiveness,
And, taking God’s word under wise protection,
Correct its tendency to diffusiveness,
And bid one reach it over hot ploughshares,—
Still, as I say, though you’ve found salvation,
If I should choose to cry, as now, ‘Shares!’—
See if the best of you bars me my ration!
I prefer, if you please, for my expounder
Of the laws of the feast, the feast’s own Founder;
Mine’s the same right with your poorest and sickliest,
Supposing I don the marriage vestiment:
So, shut your mouth and open your Testament,
And carve me my portion at your quickliest!”
Accordingly, as a shoemaker’s lad
With wizened face in want of soap,
And wet apron wound round his waist like a rope,
(After stopping outside, for his cough was bad,
To get the fit over, poor gentle creature
And so avoid distrubing the preacher)
—Passed in, I sent my elbow spikewise
At the shutting door, and entered likewise,
Received the hinge’s accustomed greeting,
And crossed the threshold’s magic pentacle,
And found myself in full conventicle,
—To wit, in Zion Chapel Meeting,
On the Christmas-Eve of ‘Forty-nine,
Which, calling its flock to their special clover,
Found all assembled and one sheep over,
Whose lot, as the weather pleased, was mine.

III

I very soon had enough of it.
The hot smell and the human noises,
And my neighbor’s coat, the greasy cuff of it,
Were a pebble-stone that a child’s hand poises,
Compared with the pig-of-lead-like pressure
Of the preaching man’s immense stupidity,
As he poured his doctrine forth, full measure,
To meet his audience’s avidity.
You needed not the wit of the Sibyl
To guess the cause of it all, in a twinkling:
No sooner our friend had got an inkling
Of treasure hid in the Holy Bible,
(Whene’er ‘t was the thought first struck him,
How death, at unawares, might duck him
Deeper than the grave, and quench
The gin-shop’s light in hell’s grim drench)
Than he handled it so, in fine irreverence,
As to hug the book of books to pieces:
And, a patchwork of chapters and texts in severance,
Not improved by the private dog’s-ears and creases,
Having clothed his own soul with, he’d fain see equipt yours,—
So tossed you again your Holy Scriptures.
And you picked them up, in a sense, no doubt:
Nay, had but a single face of my neighbors
Appeared to suspect that the preacher’s labors
Were help which the world could be saved without,
‘T is odds but I might have borne in quiet
A qualm or two at my spiritual diet,
Or (who can tell?) perchance even mustered
Somewhat to urge in behalf of the sermon:
But the flock sat on, divinely flustered,
Sniffing, methought, its dew of Hermon
With such content in every snuffle,
As the devil inside us loves to ruffle.
My old fat woman purred with pleasure,
And thumb round thumb went twirling faster,
While she, to his periods keeping measure,
Maternally devoured the pastor.
The man with the handkerchief untied it,
Showed us a horrible wen inside it,
Gave his eyelids yet another *******,
And rocked himself as the woman was doing.
The shoemaker’s lad, discreetly choking,
Kept down his cough. ‘T was too provoking!
My gorge rose at the nonsense and stuff of it;
So, saying like Eve when she plucked the apple,
“I wanted a taste, and now there’s enough of it,”
I flung out of the little chapel.

IV

There was a lull in the rain, a lull
In the wind too; the moon was risen,
And would have shone out pure and full,
But for the ramparted cloud-prison,
Block on block built up in the West,
For what purpose the wind knows best,
Who changes his mind continually.
And the empty other half of the sky
Seemed in its silence as if it knew
What, any moment, might look through
A chance gap in that fortress massy:—
Through its fissures you got hints
Of the flying moon, by the shifting tints,
Now, a dull lion-color, now, brassy
Burning to yellow, and whitest yellow,
Like furnace-smoke just ere flames bellow,
All a-simmer with intense strain
To let her through,—then blank again,
At the hope of her appearance failing.
Just by the chapel a break in the railing
Shows a narrow path directly across;
‘T is ever dry walking there, on the moss—
Besides, you go gently all the way up-hill.
I stooped under and soon felt better;
My head grew lighter, my limbs more supple,
As I walked on, glad to have slipt the fetter.
My mind was full of the scene I had left,
That placid flock, that pastor vociferant,
—How this outside was pure and different!
The sermon, now—what a mingled weft
Of good and ill! Were either less,
Its fellow had colored the whole distinctly;
But alas for the excellent earnestness,
And the truths, quite true if stated succinctly,
But as surely false, in their quaint presentment,
However to pastor and flock’s contentment!
Say rather, such truths looked false to your eyes,
With his provings and parallels twisted and twined,
Till how could you know them, grown double their size
In the natural fog of the good man’s mind,
Like yonder spots of our roadside lamps,
Haloed about with the common’s damps?
Truth remains true, the fault’s in the prover;
The zeal was good, and the aspiration;
And yet, and yet, yet, fifty times over,
Pharaoh received no demonstration,
By his Baker’s dream of Baskets Three,
Of the doctrine of the Trinity,—
Although, as our preacher thus embellished it,
Apparently his hearers relished it
With so unfeigned a gust—who knows if
They did not prefer our friend to Joseph?
But so it is everywhere, one way with all of them!
These people have really felt, no doubt,
A something, the motion they style the Call of them;
And this is their method of bringing about,
By a mechanism of words and tones,
(So many texts in so many groans)
A sort of reviving and reproducing,
More or less perfectly, (who can tell?)
The mood itself, which strengthens by using;
And how that happens, I understand well.
A tune was born in my head last week,
Out of the thump-thump and shriek-shriek
Of the train, as I came by it, up from Manchester;
And when, next week, I take it back again,
My head will sing to the engine’s clack again,
While it only makes my neighbor’s haunches stir,
—Finding no dormant musical sprout
In him, as in me, to be jolted out.
‘T is the taught already that profits by teaching;
He gets no more from the railway’s preaching
Than, from this preacher who does the rail’s officer, I:
Whom therefore the flock cast a jealous eye on.
Still, why paint over their door “Mount Zion,”
To which all flesh shall come, saith the pro phecy?

V

But wherefore be harsh on a single case?
After how many modes, this Christmas-Eve,
Does the self-same weary thing take place?
The same endeavor to make you believe,
And with much the same effect, no more:
Each method abundantly convincing,
As I say, to those convinced before,
But scarce to be swallowed without wincing
By the not-as-yet-convinced. For me,
I have my own church equally:
And in this church my faith sprang first!
(I said, as I reached the rising ground,
And the wind began again, with a burst
Of rain in my face, and a glad rebound
From the heart beneath, as if, God speeding me,
I entered his church-door, nature leading me)
—In youth I looked to these very skies,
And probing their immensities,
I found God there, his visible power;
Yet felt in my heart, amid all its sense
Of the power, an equal evidence
That his love, there too, was the nobler dower.
For the loving worm within its clod
Were diviner than a loveless god
Amid his worlds, I will dare to say.
You know what I mean: God’s all man’s naught:
But also, God, whose pleasure brought
Man into being, stands away
As it were a handbreadth off, to give
Room for the newly-made to live,
And look at him from a place apart,
And use his gifts of brain and heart,
Given, indeed, but to keep forever.
Who speaks of man, then, must not sever
Man’s very elements from man,
Saying, “But all is God’s”—whose plan
Was to create man and then leave him
Able, his own word saith, to grieve him,
But able to glorify him too,
As a mere machine could never do,
That prayed or praised, all unaware
Of its fitness for aught but praise and prayer,
Made perfect as a thing of course.
Man, therefore, stands on his own stock
Of love and power as a pin-point rock:
And, looking to God who ordained divorce
Of the rock from his boundless continent,
Sees, in his power made evident,
Only excess by a million-fold
O’er the power God gave man in the mould.
For, note: man’s hand, first formed to carry
A few pounds’ weight, when taught to marry
Its strength with an engine’s, lifts a mountain,
—Advancing in power by one degree;
And why count steps through eternity?
But love is the ever-springing fountain:
Man may enlarge or narrow his bed
For the water’s play, but the water-head—
How can he multiply or reduce it?
As easy create it, as cause it to cease;
He may profit by it, or abuse it,
But ‘t is not a thing to bear increase
As power does: be love less or more
In the heart of man, he keeps it shut
Or opes it wide, as he pleases, but
Love’s sum remains what it was before.
So, gazing up, in my youth, at love
As seen through power, ever above
All modes which make it manifest,
My soul brought all to a single test—
That he, the Eternal First and Last,
Who, in his power, had so surpassed
All man conceives of what is might,—
Whose wisdom, too, showed infinite,
—Would prove as infinitely good;
Would never, (my soul understood,)
With power to work all love desires,
Bestow e’en less than man requires;
That he who endlessly was teaching,
Above my spirit’s utmost reaching,
What love can do in the leaf or stone,
(So that to master this alone,
This done in the stone or leaf for me,
I must go on learning endlessly)
Would never need that I, in turn,
Should point him out defect unheeded,
And show that God had yet to learn
What the meanest human creature needed,
—Not life, to wit, for a few short years,
Tracking his way through doubts and fears,
While the stupid earth on which I stay
Suffers no change, but passive adds
Its myriad years to myriads,
Though I, he gave it to, decay,
Seeing death come and choose about me,
And my dearest ones depart without me.
No: love which, on earth, amid all the shows of it,
Has ever been seen the sole good of life in it,
The love, ever growing there, spite of the strife in it,
Shall arise, made perfect, from death’s repose of it.
And I shall behold thee, face to face,
O God, and in thy light retrace
How in all I loved here, still wast thou!
Whom pressing to, then, as I fain would now,
I shall find as able to satiate
The love, thy gift, as my spirit’s wonder
Thou art able to quicken and sublimate,
With this sky of thine, that I now walk under
And glory in thee for, as I gaze
Thus, thus! Oh, let men keep their ways
Of seeking thee in a narrow shrine—
Be this my way! And this is mine!

VI

For lo, what think you? suddenly
The rain and the wind ceased, and the sky
Received at once the full fruition
Of the moon’s consummate apparition.
The black cloud-barricade was riven,
Ruined beneath her feet, and driven
Deep in the West; while, bare and breathless,
North and South and East lay ready
For a glorious thing that, dauntless, deathless,
Sprang across them and stood steady.
‘T was a moon-rainbow, vast and perfect,
From heaven to heaven extending, perfect
As the mother-moon’s self, full in face.
It rose, distinctly at the base
With its seven proper colors chorded,
Which still, in the rising, were compressed,
Until at last they coalesced,
And supreme the spectral creature lorded
In a triumph of whitest white,—
Above which intervened the night.
But above night too, like only the next,
The second of a wondrous sequence,
Reaching in rare and rarer frequence,
Till the heaven of heavens were circumflexed
Another rainbow rose, a mightier,
Fainter, flushier and flightier,—
Rapture dying along its verge.
Oh, whose foot shall I see emerge,
Whose, from the straining topmost dark,
On to the keystone of that are?

VII

This sight was shown me, there and then,—
Me, one out of a world of men,
Singled forth, as the chance might hap
To another if, in a thu
vircapio gale Jul 2012
she is my nihilistic god;

i am a stag leap.
the fainter wind-caress
felt deep in trunks and boulder bed.
i am delight for loosened thorns
that piercing underfoot will spur to run
my naked body's open-air embrace
atop the callus of my seasoned fun,
skirring flora shadow-dancing bright
descending mountainside of noon
in blurrs refracting sightful bones.
i am the sense of
transtemporal glacial moans,

the heartbeat of the soil breath
to puff from feasted log a mycophile's awe
or want for all placental webs in view
for naming earth a seeping sorrows tithe:
my consciousness of things alive.

the stinging lungs atop the path
are emblems of a winging truth
to overcome her nearing death.
i am the lingham of creations' race.
i am the sensate reeling blow by empty blow.
the gravity of light and dark;
gray theopolis of fists and falls.
envelopment of massive meanings filled
in nether-branchings' net
and mediatrix scorn: the wider world absorbs my self as ~ all~
~. .all. . ~
prating some nepenthean law
to sour our poetic hate
and deeply bury seismic seeds she wants to sow, like
ancient clues of metagender fact:
hermaphroditic **** to 'normal' eyes.
icecaps to resize and singing moralize;
a dolphin midwife toning yoni love
for labor certain nuns call "gift"
as crown of pleasure heights
on par with mysteries;
regrowing infant fingertips,
to pi recited over days,
to vaster mindscapes drawn in ways
'beyond the genius of the sea'

why wait for ease of shame?
thin veils of culture lift
and family bonds anew to tow
the peace from out irratic weight of nation rifts;
instantiations burst beyond the tunnel course~
rhythmic doomsday yearnings line the halls of humantime:
prophetic visions of a sea to come,
Utnapishtim keeps himself alive
to garden with his wife a thriving mortal line.
Quetzalcohuatl finds himself *****
to bloodlet savior sexuality,
his heart a morning star, a Mayan Venus shine.

i see the standing trees
entwine slow-love to sky
so i can swing and heave
my universe above the words,
to carry thorns as well as petals, doves.
the vision ends. the new begins
to filter dyad lies through
inter-
corporeal lens.
embodied ivy climbs the tree of death
to rewind love and deepen love,
to bound the loss with goddess wisdom ends and other ends
of ouroboros shedding clear
of limits insight thrives to near.
sunglance peeking is the hovering of me,
steady comfort crosses floating lotus feet.
the softest rock has melded under thee
to join a forest pausing here.
a berry soaks itself of all i am
while nutty chipmunks chirp in whirls;
the clouds are girls you've been,
Nephelae to tease in quenching gowns
the verdant book of men we've known, who leaf
the air to taste another form of fairness lent.
silver is the sun in times of stillness overached.
sifted tensions drift to lie awake, but
drowning in a stream of glowing calm,
i am the woody balm.
the scent of bark unnestled dry
and leaves remembrance when
the breathing stops, the final
fleshing in of nowhere, never then.
you are transcendent of transcending
pure. end, endure and lucid ending live again
in empty worship ringing plenum om.
How sweetly shines, through azure skies,
  The lamp of Heaven on Lora’s shore;
Where Alva’s hoary turrets rise,
  And hear the din of arms no more!

But often has yon rolling moon,
  On Alva’s casques of silver play’d;
And view’d, at midnight’s silent noon,
  Her chiefs in gleaming mail array’d:

And, on the crimson’d rocks beneath,
  Which scowl o’er ocean’s sullen flow,
Pale in the scatter’d ranks of death,
  She saw the gasping warrior low;

While many an eye, which ne’er again
  Could mark the rising orb of day,
Turn’d feebly from the gory plain,
  Beheld in death her fading ray.

Once, to those eyes the lamp of Love,
  They blest her dear propitious light;
But, now, she glimmer’d from above,
  A sad, funereal torch of night.

Faded is Alva’s noble race,
  And grey her towers are seen afar;
No more her heroes urge the chase,
  Or roll the crimson tide of war.

But, who was last of Alva’s clan?
  Why grows the moss on Alva’s stone?
Her towers resound no steps of man,
  They echo to the gale alone.

And, when that gale is fierce and high,
  A sound is heard in yonder hall;
It rises hoarsely through the sky,
  And vibrates o’er the mould’ring wall.

Yes, when the eddying tempest sighs,
  It shakes the shield of Oscar brave;
But, there, no more his banners rise,
  No more his plumes of sable wave.

Fair shone the sun on Oscar’s birth,
  When Angus hail’d his eldest born;
The vassals round their chieftain’s hearth
  Crowd to applaud the happy morn.

They feast upon the mountain deer,
  The Pibroch rais’d its piercing note,
To gladden more their Highland cheer,
  The strains in martial numbers float.

And they who heard the war-notes wild,
  Hop’d that, one day, the Pibroch’s strain
Should play before the Hero’s child,
  While he should lead the Tartan train.

Another year is quickly past,
  And Angus hails another son;
His natal day is like the last,
  Nor soon the jocund feast was done.

Taught by their sire to bend the bow,
  On Alva’s dusky hills of wind,
The boys in childhood chas’d the roe,
  And left their hounds in speed behind.

But ere their years of youth are o’er,
  They mingle in the ranks of war;
They lightly wheel the bright claymore,
  And send the whistling arrow far.

Dark was the flow of Oscar’s hair,
  Wildly it stream’d along the gale;
But Allan’s locks were bright and fair,
  And pensive seem’d his cheek, and pale.

But Oscar own’d a hero’s soul,
  His dark eye shone through beams of truth;
Allan had early learn’d controul,
  And smooth his words had been from youth.

Both, both were brave; the Saxon spear
  Was shiver’d oft beneath their steel;
And Oscar’s ***** scorn’d to fear,
  But Oscar’s ***** knew to feel;

While Allan’s soul belied his form,
  Unworthy with such charms to dwell:
Keen as the lightning of the storm,
  On foes his deadly vengeance fell.

From high Southannon’s distant tower
  Arrived a young and noble dame;
With Kenneth’s lands to form her dower,
  Glenalvon’s blue-eyed daughter came;

And Oscar claim’d the beauteous bride,
  And Angus on his Oscar smil’d:
It soothed the father’s feudal pride
  Thus to obtain Glenalvon’s child.

Hark! to the Pibroch’s pleasing note,
  Hark! to the swelling nuptial song,
In joyous strains the voices float,
  And, still, the choral peal prolong.

See how the Heroes’ blood-red plumes
  Assembled wave in Alva’s hall;
Each youth his varied plaid assumes,
  Attending on their chieftain’s call.

It is not war their aid demands,
  The Pibroch plays the song of peace;
To Oscar’s nuptials throng the bands
  Nor yet the sounds of pleasure cease.

But where is Oscar? sure ’tis late:
  Is this a bridegroom’s ardent flame?
While thronging guests and ladies wait,
  Nor Oscar nor his brother came.

At length young Allan join’d the bride;
  “Why comes not Oscar?” Angus said:
“Is he not here?” the Youth replied;
  “With me he rov’d not o’er the glade:

“Perchance, forgetful of the day,
  ’Tis his to chase the bounding roe;
Or Ocean’s waves prolong his stay:
  Yet, Oscar’s bark is seldom slow.”

“Oh, no!” the anguish’d Sire rejoin’d,
  “Nor chase, nor wave, my Boy delay;
Would he to Mora seem unkind?
  Would aught to her impede his way?

“Oh, search, ye Chiefs! oh, search around!
  Allan, with these, through Alva fly;
Till Oscar, till my son is found,
  Haste, haste, nor dare attempt reply.”

All is confusion—through the vale,
  The name of Oscar hoarsely rings,
It rises on the murm’ring gale,
  Till night expands her dusky wings.

It breaks the stillness of the night,
  But echoes through her shades in vain;
It sounds through morning’s misty light,
  But Oscar comes not o’er the plain.

Three days, three sleepless nights, the Chief
  For Oscar search’d each mountain cave;
Then hope is lost; in boundless grief,
  His locks in grey-torn ringlets wave.

“Oscar! my son!—thou God of Heav’n,
  Restore the prop of sinking age!
Or, if that hope no more is given,
  Yield his assassin to my rage.

“Yes, on some desert rocky shore
  My Oscar’s whiten’d bones must lie;
Then grant, thou God! I ask no more,
  With him his frantic Sire may die!

“Yet, he may live,—away, despair!
  Be calm, my soul! he yet may live;
T’ arraign my fate, my voice forbear!
  O God! my impious prayer forgive.

“What, if he live for me no more,
  I sink forgotten in the dust,
The hope of Alva’s age is o’er:
  Alas! can pangs like these be just?”

Thus did the hapless Parent mourn,
  Till Time, who soothes severest woe,
Had bade serenity return,
  And made the tear-drop cease to flow.

For, still, some latent hope surviv’d
  That Oscar might once more appear;
His hope now droop’d and now revived,
  Till Time had told a tedious year.

Days roll’d along, the orb of light
  Again had run his destined race;
No Oscar bless’d his father’s sight,
  And sorrow left a fainter trace.

For youthful Allan still remain’d,
  And, now, his father’s only joy:
And Mora’s heart was quickly gain’d,
  For beauty crown’d the fair-hair’d boy.

She thought that Oscar low was laid,
  And Allan’s face was wondrous fair;
If Oscar liv’d, some other maid
  Had claim’d his faithless *****’s care.

And Angus said, if one year more
  In fruitless hope was pass’d away,
His fondest scruples should be o’er,
  And he would name their nuptial day.

Slow roll’d the moons, but blest at last
  Arriv’d the dearly destin’d morn:
The year of anxious trembling past,
  What smiles the lovers’ cheeks adorn!

Hark to the Pibroch’s pleasing note!
  Hark to the swelling nuptial song!
In joyous strains the voices float,
  And, still, the choral peal prolong.

Again the clan, in festive crowd,
  Throng through the gate of Alva’s hall;
The sounds of mirth re-echo loud,
  And all their former joy recall.

But who is he, whose darken’d brow
  Glooms in the midst of general mirth?
Before his eyes’ far fiercer glow
  The blue flames curdle o’er the hearth.

Dark is the robe which wraps his form,
  And tall his plume of gory red;
His voice is like the rising storm,
  But light and trackless is his tread.

’Tis noon of night, the pledge goes round,
  The bridegroom’s health is deeply quaff’d;
With shouts the vaulted roofs resound,
  And all combine to hail the draught.

Sudden the stranger-chief arose,
  And all the clamorous crowd are hush’d;
And Angus’ cheek with wonder glows,
  And Mora’s tender ***** blush’d.

“Old man!” he cried, “this pledge is done,
  Thou saw’st ’twas truly drunk by me;
It hail’d the nuptials of thy son:
  Now will I claim a pledge from thee.

“While all around is mirth and joy,
  To bless thy Allan’s happy lot,
Say, hadst thou ne’er another boy?
  Say, why should Oscar be forgot?”

“Alas!” the hapless Sire replied,
  The big tear starting as he spoke,
“When Oscar left my hall, or died,
  This aged heart was almost broke.

“Thrice has the earth revolv’d her course
  Since Oscar’s form has bless’d my sight;
And Allan is my last resource,
  Since martial Oscar’s death, or flight.”

“’Tis well,” replied the stranger stern,
  And fiercely flash’d his rolling eye;
“Thy Oscar’s fate, I fain would learn;
  Perhaps the Hero did not die.

“Perchance, if those, whom most he lov’d,
  Would call, thy Oscar might return;
Perchance, the chief has only rov’d;
  For him thy Beltane, yet, may burn.

“Fill high the bowl the table round,
  We will not claim the pledge by stealth;
With wine let every cup be crown’d;
  Pledge me departed Oscar’s health.”

“With all my soul,” old Angus said,
  And fill’d his goblet to the brim:
“Here’s to my boy! alive or dead,
  I ne’er shall find a son like him.”

“Bravely, old man, this health has sped;
  But why does Allan trembling stand?
Come, drink remembrance of the dead,
  And raise thy cup with firmer hand.”

The crimson glow of Allan’s face
  Was turn’d at once to ghastly hue;
The drops of death each other chace,
  Adown in agonizing dew.

Thrice did he raise the goblet high,
  And thrice his lips refused to taste;
For thrice he caught the stranger’s eye
  On his with deadly fury plac’d.

“And is it thus a brother hails
  A brother’s fond remembrance here?
If thus affection’s strength prevails,
  What might we not expect from fear?”

Roused by the sneer, he rais’d the bowl,
  “Would Oscar now could share our mirth!”
Internal fear appall’d his soul;
  He said, and dash’d the cup to earth.

“’Tis he! I hear my murderer’s voice!”
  Loud shrieks a darkly gleaming Form.
“A murderer’s voice!” the roof replies,
  And deeply swells the bursting storm.

The tapers wink, the chieftains shrink,
  The stranger’s gone,—amidst the crew,
A Form was seen, in tartan green,
  And tall the shade terrific grew.

His waist was bound with a broad belt round,
  His plume of sable stream’d on high;
But his breast was bare, with the red wounds there,
  And fix’d was the glare of his glassy eye.

And thrice he smil’d, with his eye so wild
  On Angus bending low the knee;
And thrice he frown’d, on a Chief on the ground,
  Whom shivering crowds with horror see.

The bolts loud roll from pole to pole,
  And thunders through the welkin ring,
And the gleaming form, through the mist of the storm,
  Was borne on high by the whirlwind’s wing.

Cold was the feast, the revel ceas’d.
  Who lies upon the stony floor?
Oblivion press’d old Angus’ breast,
  At length his life-pulse throbs once more.

“Away, away! let the leech essay
  To pour the light on Allan’s eyes:”
His sand is done,—his race is run;
  Oh! never more shall Allan rise!

But Oscar’s breast is cold as clay,
  His locks are lifted by the gale;
And Allan’s barbèd arrow lay
  With him in dark Glentanar’s vale.

And whence the dreadful stranger came,
  Or who, no mortal wight can tell;
But no one doubts the form of flame,
  For Alva’s sons knew Oscar well.

Ambition nerv’d young Allan’s hand,
  Exulting demons wing’d his dart;
While Envy wav’d her burning brand,
  And pour’d her venom round his heart.

Swift is the shaft from Allan’s bow;
  Whose streaming life-blood stains his side?
Dark Oscar’s sable crest is low,
  The dart has drunk his vital tide.

And Mora’s eye could Allan move,
  She bade his wounded pride rebel:
Alas! that eyes, which beam’d with love,
  Should urge the soul to deeds of Hell.

Lo! see’st thou not a lonely tomb,
  Which rises o’er a warrior dead?
It glimmers through the twilight gloom;
  Oh! that is Allan’s nuptial bed.

Far, distant far, the noble grave
  Which held his clan’s great ashes stood;
And o’er his corse no banners wave,
  For they were stain’d with kindred blood.

What minstrel grey, what hoary bard,
  Shall Allan’s deeds on harp-strings raise?
The song is glory’s chief reward,
  But who can strike a murd’rer’s praise?

Unstrung, untouch’d, the harp must stand,
  No minstrel dare the theme awake;
Guilt would benumb his palsied hand,
  His harp in shuddering chords would break.

No lyre of fame, no hallow’d verse,
  Shall sound his glories high in air:
A dying father’s bitter curse,
  A brother’s death-groan echoes there.
She looks at mirror
Cannot understand
What she’s become
Never queen her entire life
She glances out alley window
Into 4am darkness
Feeling tragic ending
To accidental romance
Premeditated ******
In Chicago in bitter winter
In rundown diner kitchen
Haphazardly displayed
Sharp shiny axe
Above doorway
White lit sign with red lettering
That spells TIXE
He was a Grecian lad, who coming home
With pulpy figs and wine from Sicily
Stood at his galley’s prow, and let the foam
Blow through his crisp brown curls unconsciously,
And holding wave and wind in boy’s despite
Peered from his dripping seat across the wet and stormy night.

Till with the dawn he saw a burnished spear
Like a thin thread of gold against the sky,
And hoisted sail, and strained the creaking gear,
And bade the pilot head her lustily
Against the nor’west gale, and all day long
Held on his way, and marked the rowers’ time with measured song.

And when the faint Corinthian hills were red
Dropped anchor in a little sandy bay,
And with fresh boughs of olive crowned his head,
And brushed from cheek and throat the hoary spray,
And washed his limbs with oil, and from the hold
Brought out his linen tunic and his sandals brazen-soled,

And a rich robe stained with the fishers’ juice
Which of some swarthy trader he had bought
Upon the sunny quay at Syracuse,
And was with Tyrian broideries inwrought,
And by the questioning merchants made his way
Up through the soft and silver woods, and when the labouring day

Had spun its tangled web of crimson cloud,
Clomb the high hill, and with swift silent feet
Crept to the fane unnoticed by the crowd
Of busy priests, and from some dark retreat
Watched the young swains his frolic playmates bring
The firstling of their little flock, and the shy shepherd fling

The crackling salt upon the flame, or hang
His studded crook against the temple wall
To Her who keeps away the ravenous fang
Of the base wolf from homestead and from stall;
And then the clear-voiced maidens ‘gan to sing,
And to the altar each man brought some goodly offering,

A beechen cup brimming with milky foam,
A fair cloth wrought with cunning imagery
Of hounds in chase, a waxen honey-comb
Dripping with oozy gold which scarce the bee
Had ceased from building, a black skin of oil
Meet for the wrestlers, a great boar the fierce and white-tusked
spoil

Stolen from Artemis that jealous maid
To please Athena, and the dappled hide
Of a tall stag who in some mountain glade
Had met the shaft; and then the herald cried,
And from the pillared precinct one by one
Went the glad Greeks well pleased that they their simple vows had
done.

And the old priest put out the waning fires
Save that one lamp whose restless ruby glowed
For ever in the cell, and the shrill lyres
Came fainter on the wind, as down the road
In joyous dance these country folk did pass,
And with stout hands the warder closed the gates of polished brass.

Long time he lay and hardly dared to breathe,
And heard the cadenced drip of spilt-out wine,
And the rose-petals falling from the wreath
As the night breezes wandered through the shrine,
And seemed to be in some entranced swoon
Till through the open roof above the full and brimming moon

Flooded with sheeny waves the marble floor,
When from his nook up leapt the venturous lad,
And flinging wide the cedar-carven door
Beheld an awful image saffron-clad
And armed for battle! the gaunt Griffin glared
From the huge helm, and the long lance of wreck and ruin flared

Like a red rod of flame, stony and steeled
The Gorgon’s head its leaden eyeballs rolled,
And writhed its snaky horrors through the shield,
And gaped aghast with bloodless lips and cold
In passion impotent, while with blind gaze
The blinking owl between the feet hooted in shrill amaze.

The lonely fisher as he trimmed his lamp
Far out at sea off Sunium, or cast
The net for tunnies, heard a brazen *****
Of horses smite the waves, and a wild blast
Divide the folded curtains of the night,
And knelt upon the little ****, and prayed in holy fright.

And guilty lovers in their venery
Forgat a little while their stolen sweets,
Deeming they heard dread Dian’s bitter cry;
And the grim watchmen on their lofty seats
Ran to their shields in haste precipitate,
Or strained black-bearded throats across the dusky parapet.

For round the temple rolled the clang of arms,
And the twelve Gods leapt up in marble fear,
And the air quaked with dissonant alarums
Till huge Poseidon shook his mighty spear,
And on the frieze the prancing horses neighed,
And the low tread of hurrying feet rang from the cavalcade.

Ready for death with parted lips he stood,
And well content at such a price to see
That calm wide brow, that terrible maidenhood,
The marvel of that pitiless chastity,
Ah! well content indeed, for never wight
Since Troy’s young shepherd prince had seen so wonderful a sight.

Ready for death he stood, but lo! the air
Grew silent, and the horses ceased to neigh,
And off his brow he tossed the clustering hair,
And from his limbs he throw the cloak away;
For whom would not such love make desperate?
And nigher came, and touched her throat, and with hands violate

Undid the cuirass, and the crocus gown,
And bared the ******* of polished ivory,
Till from the waist the peplos falling down
Left visible the secret mystery
Which to no lover will Athena show,
The grand cool flanks, the crescent thighs, the bossy hills of
snow.

Those who have never known a lover’s sin
Let them not read my ditty, it will be
To their dull ears so musicless and thin
That they will have no joy of it, but ye
To whose wan cheeks now creeps the lingering smile,
Ye who have learned who Eros is,—O listen yet awhile.

A little space he let his greedy eyes
Rest on the burnished image, till mere sight
Half swooned for surfeit of such luxuries,
And then his lips in hungering delight
Fed on her lips, and round the towered neck
He flung his arms, nor cared at all his passion’s will to check.

Never I ween did lover hold such tryst,
For all night long he murmured honeyed word,
And saw her sweet unravished limbs, and kissed
Her pale and argent body undisturbed,
And paddled with the polished throat, and pressed
His hot and beating heart upon her chill and icy breast.

It was as if Numidian javelins
Pierced through and through his wild and whirling brain,
And his nerves thrilled like throbbing violins
In exquisite pulsation, and the pain
Was such sweet anguish that he never drew
His lips from hers till overhead the lark of warning flew.

They who have never seen the daylight peer
Into a darkened room, and drawn the curtain,
And with dull eyes and wearied from some dear
And worshipped body risen, they for certain
Will never know of what I try to sing,
How long the last kiss was, how fond and late his lingering.

The moon was girdled with a crystal rim,
The sign which shipmen say is ominous
Of wrath in heaven, the wan stars were dim,
And the low lightening east was tremulous
With the faint fluttering wings of flying dawn,
Ere from the silent sombre shrine his lover had withdrawn.

Down the steep rock with hurried feet and fast
Clomb the brave lad, and reached the cave of Pan,
And heard the goat-foot snoring as he passed,
And leapt upon a grassy knoll and ran
Like a young fawn unto an olive wood
Which in a shady valley by the well-built city stood;

And sought a little stream, which well he knew,
For oftentimes with boyish careless shout
The green and crested grebe he would pursue,
Or snare in woven net the silver trout,
And down amid the startled reeds he lay
Panting in breathless sweet affright, and waited for the day.

On the green bank he lay, and let one hand
Dip in the cool dark eddies listlessly,
And soon the breath of morning came and fanned
His hot flushed cheeks, or lifted wantonly
The tangled curls from off his forehead, while
He on the running water gazed with strange and secret smile.

And soon the shepherd in rough woollen cloak
With his long crook undid the wattled cotes,
And from the stack a thin blue wreath of smoke
Curled through the air across the ripening oats,
And on the hill the yellow house-dog bayed
As through the crisp and rustling fern the heavy cattle strayed.

And when the light-foot mower went afield
Across the meadows laced with threaded dew,
And the sheep bleated on the misty weald,
And from its nest the waking corncrake flew,
Some woodmen saw him lying by the stream
And marvelled much that any lad so beautiful could seem,

Nor deemed him born of mortals, and one said,
‘It is young Hylas, that false runaway
Who with a Naiad now would make his bed
Forgetting Herakles,’ but others, ‘Nay,
It is Narcissus, his own paramour,
Those are the fond and crimson lips no woman can allure.’

And when they nearer came a third one cried,
‘It is young Dionysos who has hid
His spear and fawnskin by the river side
Weary of hunting with the Bassarid,
And wise indeed were we away to fly:
They live not long who on the gods immortal come to spy.’

So turned they back, and feared to look behind,
And told the timid swain how they had seen
Amid the reeds some woodland god reclined,
And no man dared to cross the open green,
And on that day no olive-tree was slain,
Nor rushes cut, but all deserted was the fair domain,

Save when the neat-herd’s lad, his empty pail
Well slung upon his back, with leap and bound
Raced on the other side, and stopped to hail,
Hoping that he some comrade new had found,
And gat no answer, and then half afraid
Passed on his simple way, or down the still and silent glade

A little girl ran laughing from the farm,
Not thinking of love’s secret mysteries,
And when she saw the white and gleaming arm
And all his manlihood, with longing eyes
Whose passion mocked her sweet virginity
Watched him awhile, and then stole back sadly and wearily.

Far off he heard the city’s hum and noise,
And now and then the shriller laughter where
The passionate purity of brown-limbed boys
Wrestled or raced in the clear healthful air,
And now and then a little tinkling bell
As the shorn wether led the sheep down to the mossy well.

Through the grey willows danced the fretful gnat,
The grasshopper chirped idly from the tree,
In sleek and oily coat the water-rat
Breasting the little ripples manfully
Made for the wild-duck’s nest, from bough to bough
Hopped the shy finch, and the huge tortoise crept across the
slough.

On the faint wind floated the silky seeds
As the bright scythe swept through the waving grass,
The ouzel-**** splashed circles in the reeds
And flecked with silver whorls the forest’s glass,
Which scarce had caught again its imagery
Ere from its bed the dusky tench leapt at the dragon-fly.

But little care had he for any thing
Though up and down the beech the squirrel played,
And from the copse the linnet ‘gan to sing
To its brown mate its sweetest serenade;
Ah! little care indeed, for he had seen
The ******* of Pallas and the naked wonder of the Queen.

But when the herdsman called his straggling goats
With whistling pipe across the rocky road,
And the shard-beetle with its trumpet-notes
Boomed through the darkening woods, and seemed to bode
Of coming storm, and the belated crane
Passed homeward like a shadow, and the dull big drops of rain

Fell on the pattering fig-leaves, up he rose,
And from the gloomy forest went his way
Past sombre homestead and wet orchard-close,
And came at last unto a little quay,
And called his mates aboard, and took his seat
On the high ****, and pushed from land, and loosed the dripping
sheet,

And steered across the bay, and when nine suns
Passed down the long and laddered way of gold,
And nine pale moons had breathed their orisons
To the chaste stars their confessors, or told
Their dearest secret to the downy moth
That will not fly at noonday, through the foam and surging froth

Came a great owl with yellow sulphurous eyes
And lit upon the ship, whose timbers creaked
As though the lading of three argosies
Were in the hold, and flapped its wings and shrieked,
And darkness straightway stole across the deep,
Sheathed was Orion’s sword, dread Mars himself fled down the steep,

And the moon hid behind a tawny mask
Of drifting cloud, and from the ocean’s marge
Rose the red plume, the huge and horned casque,
The seven-cubit spear, the brazen targe!
And clad in bright and burnished panoply
Athena strode across the stretch of sick and shivering sea!

To the dull sailors’ sight her loosened looks
Seemed like the jagged storm-rack, and her feet
Only the spume that floats on hidden rocks,
And, marking how the rising waters beat
Against the rolling ship, the pilot cried
To the young helmsman at the stern to luff to windward side

But he, the overbold adulterer,
A dear profaner of great mysteries,
An ardent amorous idolater,
When he beheld those grand relentless eyes
Laughed loud for joy, and crying out ‘I come’
Leapt from the lofty **** into the chill and churning foam.

Then fell from the high heaven one bright star,
One dancer left the circling galaxy,
And back to Athens on her clattering car
In all the pride of venged divinity
Pale Pallas swept with shrill and steely clank,
And a few gurgling bubbles rose where her boy lover sank.

And the mast shuddered as the gaunt owl flew
With mocking hoots after the wrathful Queen,
And the old pilot bade the trembling crew
Hoist the big sail, and told how he had seen
Close to the stern a dim and giant form,
And like a dipping swallow the stout ship dashed through the storm.

And no man dared to speak of Charmides
Deeming that he some evil thing had wrought,
And when they reached the strait Symplegades
They beached their galley on the shore, and sought
The toll-gate of the city hastily,
And in the market showed their brown and pictured pottery.
S.  Patrick. You who are bent, and bald, and blind,
With a heavy heart and a wandering mind,
Have known three centuries, poets sing,
Of dalliance with a demon thing.

Oisin. Sad to remember, sick with years,
The swift innumerable spears,
The horsemen with their floating hair,
And bowls of barley, honey, and wine,
Those merry couples dancing in tune,
And the white body that lay by mine;
But the tale, though words be lighter than air.
Must live to be old like the wandering moon.

Caoilte, and Conan, and Finn were there,
When we followed a deer with our baying hounds.
With Bran, Sceolan, and Lomair,
And passing the Firbolgs' burial-motmds,
Came to the cairn-heaped grassy hill
Where passionate Maeve is stony-still;
And found On the dove-grey edge of the sea
A pearl-pale, high-born lady, who rode
On a horse with bridle of findrinny;
And like a sunset were her lips,
A stormy sunset on doomed ships;
A citron colour gloomed in her hair,

But down to her feet white vesture flowed,
And with the glimmering crimson glowed
Of many a figured embroidery;
And it was bound with a pearl-pale shell
That wavered like the summer streams,
As her soft ***** rose and fell.

S.  Patrick. You are still wrecked among heathen dreams.

Oisin. 'Why do you wind no horn?' she said
'And every hero droop his head?
The hornless deer is not more sad
That many a peaceful moment had,
More sleek than any granary mouse,
In his own leafy forest house
Among the waving fields of fern:
The hunting of heroes should be glad.'

'O pleasant woman,' answered Finn,
'We think on Oscar's pencilled urn,
And on the heroes lying slain
On Gabhra's raven-covered plain;
But where are your noble kith and kin,
And from what country do you ride?'

'My father and my mother are
Aengus and Edain, my own name
Niamh, and my country far
Beyond the tumbling of this tide.'

'What dream came with you that you came
Through bitter tide on foam-wet feet?
Did your companion wander away
From where the birds of Aengus wing?'
Thereon did she look haughty and sweet:
'I have not yet, war-weary king,
Been spoken of with any man;
Yet now I choose, for these four feet
Ran through the foam and ran to this
That I might have your son to kiss.'

'Were there no better than my son
That you through all that foam should run?'

'I loved no man, though kings besought,
Until the Danaan poets brought
Rhyme that rhymed upon Oisin's name,
And now I am dizzy with the thought
Of all that wisdom and the fame
Of battles broken by his hands,
Of stories builded by his words
That are like coloured Asian birds
At evening in their rainless lands.'

O Patrick, by your brazen bell,
There was no limb of mine but fell
Into a desperate gulph of love!
'You only will I wed,' I cried,
'And I will make a thousand songs,
And set your name all names above,
And captives bound with leathern thongs
Shall kneel and praise you, one by one,
At evening in my western dun.'

'O Oisin, mount by me and ride
To shores by the wash of the tremulous tide,
Where men have heaped no burial-mounds,
And the days pass by like a wayward tune,
Where broken faith has never been known
And the blushes of first love never have flown;
And there I will give you a hundred hounds;
No mightier creatures bay at the moon;
And a hundred robes of murmuring silk,
And a hundred calves and a hundred sheep
Whose long wool whiter than sea-froth flows,
And a hundred spears and a hundred bows,
And oil and wine and honey and milk,
And always never-anxious sleep;
While a hundred youths, mighty of limb,
But knowing nor tumult nor hate nor strife,
And a hundred ladies, merry as birds,
Who when they dance to a fitful measure
Have a speed like the speed of the salmon herds,
Shall follow your horn and obey your whim,
And you shall know the Danaan leisure;
And Niamh be with you for a wife.'
Then she sighed gently, 'It grows late.
Music and love and sleep await,
Where I would be when the white moon climbs,
The red sun falls and the world grows dim.'

And then I mounted and she bound me
With her triumphing arms around me,
And whispering to herself enwound me;
He shook himself and neighed three times:
Caoilte, Conan, and Finn came near,
And wept, and raised their lamenting hands,
And bid me stay, with many a tear;
But we rode out from the human lands.
In what far kingdom do you go'
Ah Fenians, with the shield and bow?
Or are you phantoms white as snow,
Whose lips had life's most prosperous glow?
O you, with whom in sloping vallcys,
Or down the dewy forest alleys,
I chased at morn the flying deer,
With whom I hurled the hurrying spear,
And heard the foemen's bucklers rattle,
And broke the heaving ranks of battle!
And Bran, Sceolan, and Lomair,
Where are you with your long rough hair?
You go not where the red deer feeds,
Nor tear the foemen from their steeds.

S.  Patrick. Boast not, nor mourn with drooping head
Companions long accurst and dead,
And hounds for centuries dust and air.

Oisin. We galloped over the glossy sea:
I know not if days passed or hours,
And Niamh sang continually
Danaan songs, and their dewy showers
Of pensive laughter, unhuman sound,
Lulled weariness, and softly round
My human sorrow her white arms wound.
We galloped; now a hornless deer
Passed by us, chased by a phantom hound
All pearly white, save one red ear;
And now a lady rode like the wind
With an apple of gold in her tossing hand;
And a beautiful young man followed behind
With quenchless gaze and fluttering hair.
'Were these two born in the Danaan land,
Or have they breathed the mortal air?'

'Vex them no longer,' Niamh said,
And sighing bowed her gentle head,
And sighing laid the pearly tip
Of one long finger on my lip.

But now the moon like a white rose shone
In the pale west, and the sun'S rim sank,
And clouds atrayed their rank on rank
About his fading crimson ball:
The floor of Almhuin's hosting hall
Was not more level than the sea,
As, full of loving fantasy,
And with low murmurs, we rode on,
Where many a trumpet-twisted shell
That in immortal silence sleeps
Dreaming of her own melting hues,
Her golds, her ambers, and her blues,
Pierced with soft light the shallowing deeps.
But now a wandering land breeze came
And a far sound of feathery quires;
It seemed to blow from the dying flame,
They seemed to sing in the smouldering fires.
The horse towards the music raced,
Neighing along the lifeless waste;
Like sooty fingers, many a tree
Rose ever out of the warm sea;
And they were trembling ceaselessly,
As though they all were beating time,
Upon the centre of the sun,
To that low laughing woodland rhyme.
And, now our wandering hours were done,
We cantered to the shore, and knew
The reason of the trembling trees:
Round every branch the song-birds flew,
Or clung thereon like swarming bees;
While round the shore a million stood
Like drops of frozen rainbow light,
And pondered in a soft vain mood
Upon their shadows in the tide,
And told the purple deeps their pride,
And murmured snatches of delight;
And on the shores were many boats
With bending sterns and bending bows,
And carven figures on their prows
Of bitterns, and fish-eating stoats,
And swans with their exultant throats:
And where the wood and waters meet
We tied the horse in a leafy clump,
And Niamh blew three merry notes
Out of a little silver trump;
And then an answering whispering flew
Over the bare and woody land,
A whisper of impetuous feet,
And ever nearer, nearer grew;
And from the woods rushed out a band
Of men and ladies, hand in hand,
And singing, singing all together;
Their brows were white as fragrant milk,
Their cloaks made out of yellow silk,
And trimmed with many a crimson feather;
And when they saw the cloak I wore
Was dim with mire of a mortal shore,
They fingered it and gazed on me
And laughed like murmurs of the sea;
But Niamh with a swift distress
Bid them away and hold their peace;
And when they heard her voice they ran
And knelt there, every girl and man,
And kissed, as they would never cease,
Her pearl-pale hand and the hem of her dress.
She bade them bring us to the hall
Where Aengus dreams, from sun to sun,
A Druid dream of the end of days
When the stars are to wane and the world be done.

They led us by long and shadowy ways
Where drops of dew in myriads fall,
And tangled creepers every hour
Blossom in some new crimson flower,
And once a sudden laughter sprang
From all their lips, and once they sang
Together, while the dark woods rang,
And made in all their distant parts,
With boom of bees in honey-marts,
A rumour of delighted hearts.
And once a lady by my side
Gave me a harp, and bid me sing,
And touch the laughing silver string;
But when I sang of human joy
A sorrow wrapped each merry face,
And, patrick! by your beard, they wept,
Until one came, a tearful boy;
'A sadder creature never stept
Than this strange human bard,' he cried;
And caught the silver harp away,
And, weeping over the white strings, hurled
It down in a leaf-hid, hollow place
That kept dim waters from the sky;
And each one said, with a long, long sigh,
'O saddest harp in all the world,
Sleep there till the moon and the stars die!'

And now, still sad, we came to where
A beautiful young man dreamed within
A house of wattles, clay, and skin;
One hand upheld his beardless chin,
And one a sceptre flashing out
Wild flames of red and gold and blue,
Like to a merry wandering rout
Of dancers leaping in the air;
And men and ladies knelt them there
And showed their eyes with teardrops dim,
And with low murmurs prayed to him,
And kissed the sceptre with red lips,
And touched it with their finger-tips.
He held that flashing sceptre up.
'Joy drowns the twilight in the dew,
And fills with stars night's purple cup,
And wakes the sluggard seeds of corn,
And stirs the young kid's budding horn,
And makes the infant ferns unwrap,
And for the peewit paints his cap,
And rolls along the unwieldy sun,
And makes the little planets run:
And if joy were not on the earth,
There were an end of change and birth,
And Earth and Heaven and Hell would die,
And in some gloomy barrow lie
Folded like a frozen fly;
Then mock at Death and Time with glances
And wavering arms and wandering dances.

'Men's hearts of old were drops of flame
That from the saffron morning came,
Or drops of silver joy that fell
Out of the moon's pale twisted shell;
But now hearts cry that hearts are slaves,
And toss and turn in narrow caves;
But here there is nor law nor rule,
Nor have hands held a weary tool;
And here there is nor Change nor Death,
But only kind and merry breath,
For joy is God and God is joy.'
With one long glance for girl and boy
And the pale blossom of the moon,
He fell into a Druid swoon.

And in a wild and sudden dance
We mocked at Time and Fate and Chance
And swept out of the wattled hall
And came to where the dewdrops fall
Among the foamdrops of the sea,
And there we hushed the revelry;
And, gathering on our brows a frown,
Bent all our swaying bodies down,
And to the waves that glimmer by
That sloping green De Danaan sod
Sang, 'God is joy and joy is God,
And things that have grown sad are wicked,
And things that fear the dawn of the morrow
Or the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

We danced to where in the winding thicket
The damask roses, bloom on bloom,
Like crimson meteors hang in the gloom.
And bending over them softly said,
Bending over them in the dance,
With a swift and friendly glance
From dewy eyes:  'Upon the dead
Fall the leaves of other roses,
On the dead dim earth encloses:
But never, never on our graves,
Heaped beside the glimmering waves,
Shall fall the leaves of damask roses.
For neither Death nor Change comes near us,
And all listless hours fear us,
And we fear no dawning morrow,
Nor the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

The dance wound through the windless woods;
The ever-summered solitudes;
Until the tossing arms grew still
Upon the woody central hill;
And, gathered in a panting band,
We flung on high each waving hand,
And sang unto the starry broods.
In our raised eyes there flashed a glow
Of milky brightness to and fro
As thus our song arose:  'You stars,
Across your wandering ruby cars
Shake the loose reins:  you slaves of God.
He rules you with an iron rod,
He holds you with an iron bond,
Each one woven to the other,
Each one woven to his brother
Like bubbles in a frozen pond;
But we in a lonely land abide
Unchainable as the dim tide,
With hearts that know nor law nor rule,
And hands that hold no wearisome tool,
Folded in love that fears no morrow,
Nor the grey wandering osprey Sorrow.'

O Patrick! for a hundred years
I chased upon that woody shore
The deer, the badger, and the boar.
O patrick! for a hundred years
At evening on the glimmering sands,
Beside the piled-up hunting spears,
These now outworn and withered hands
Wrestled among the island bands.
O patrick! for a hundred years
We went a-fishing in long boats
With bending sterns and bending bows,
And carven figures on their prows
Of bitterns and fish-eating stoats.
O patrick! for a hundred years
The gentle Niamh was my wife;
But now two things devour my life;
The things that most of all I hate:
Fasting and prayers.

S.  Patrick.      Tell on.

Oisin.                 Yes, yes,
For these were ancient Oisin's fate
Loosed long ago from Heaven's gate,
For his last days to lie in wait.
When one day by the tide I stood,
I found in that forgetfulness
Of dreamy foam a staff of wood
From some dead warrior's broken lance:
I tutned it in my hands; the stains
Of war were on it, and I wept,
Remembering how the Fenians stept
Along the blood-bedabbled plains,
Equal to good or grievous chance:
Thereon young Niamh softly came
And caught my hands, but spake no word
Save only many times my name,
In murmurs, like a frighted bird.
We passed by woods, and lawns of clover,
And found the horse and bridled him,
For we knew well the old was over.
I heard one say, 'His eyes grow dim
With all the ancient sorrow of men';
And wrapped in dreams rode out again
With hoofs of the pale findrinny
Over the glimmering purple sea.
Under the golden evening light,
The Immortals moved among thc fountains
By rivers and the woods' old night;
Some danced like shadows on the mountains
Some wandered ever hand in hand;
Or sat in dreams on the pale strand,
Each forehead like an obscure star
Bent down above each hooked knee,
And sang, and with a dreamy gaze
Watched where the sun in a saffron blaze
Was slumbering half in the sea-ways;
And, as they sang, the painted birds
Kept time with their bright wings and feet;
Like drops of honey came their words,
But fainter than a young lamb's bleat.

'An old man stirs the fire to a blaze,
In the house of a child, of a friend, of a brother.
He has over-lingered his welcome; the days,
Grown desolate, whisper and sigh to each other;
He hears the storm in the chimney above,
And bends to the fire and shakes with the cold,
While his heart still dreams of battle and love,
And the cry of the hounds on the hills of old.

But We are apart in the grassy places,
Where care cannot trouble the least of our days,
Or the softness of youth be gone from our faces,
Or love's first tenderness die in our gaze.
The hare grows old as she plays in the sun
And gazes around her with eyes of brightness;
Before the swift things that she dreamed of were done
She limps along in an aged whiteness;
A storm of birds in the Asian trees
Like tulips in the air a-winging,
And the gentle waves of the summer seas,
That raise their heads and wander singing,
Must murmur at last, "Unjust, unjust";
And "My speed is a weariness," falters the mouse,
And the kingfisher turns to a ball of dust,
And the roof falls in of his tunnelled house.
But the love-dew dims our eyes till the day
When God shall come from the Sea with a sigh
And bid the stars drop down from the sky,
And the moon like a pale rose wither away.'
It was obvious how to do it
Yet I couldn’t figure it out
Until I saw it in a movie
Then it became a question,
Was I wicked enough
To pull it off?
Was I strong enough
To see it through?

In one instant, you’re alive,
Eyes darting, heart pounding,
Gushing love, throwing temper tantrums,
Collapsing under weight of existence.
In next instant, you’re dead,
Cold and lifeless, end of story.
Leaving arriving escaping
The perspiration ***** smell of fear

People tell me how smart I am,
But I’m not really smart,
More like lucky, and fast runner.
I run from everything.
Did I ever tell you about the times
I’ve run straight into death’s grip,
And that *******
Keeps spitting me out

One more day, year, decade.
Ok, I say, and make more drawings,
More paintings, more poems,
More stories, more lies.
Live long enough, everything you know collapses.
I know I can be a terrible *****.
I apologize.
I don’t know what’s wrong with me.

Dreaming of moving away
Packing only bare bones of love
And commitment to never betray
Leaving arriving escaping
I wish I were married to one woman
And we lived quiet life sustaining passion
Is sustaining passion possible?

Under weight of existence?
One more moment, hour, night,
Eyes darting, heart pounding,
Gushing love, emotional insecurities,
Making more drawings, more paintings,
More poems, more stories, more lies.
People tell me how smart I am.
I can’t figure it out.
J J Jan 4
I pose high my chest of ragged ribbons
And unravel a fist to stretch out fingers in search
Of a hand glimmering pale like a lantern
throughout this grey
        empty space. Once a pavement, now as good as

Cloud. Frozen lake. Dust. Boiling ashes. Skeletons.

I am walking on the slashed frames of waves
As jesus once must have. Propelled to a miracle unwitnessned
To anyone but myself. I am impelled to corrode
Into a statue; to remain a rigamortic rotting jade jewel in the sun
Until I no longer can.
Until they found me...

Perhaps they'd dust me off, thaw the ice from my shoulders,
Rehydrate me and gorge me,
Restart the blinking light in my brain
And refrain me evermore from having to seek.

But seek I must, for the lonliness weighs me down
Further by the day. I take half as many steps now as when I began my voyage.
My memories are like ghosts of flames that play
Snakes and ladders and hide and seek.
I am the lighthouse man and I sail drunken--
A rubicund mishape of bone and scuffed thoughts,
I can feel every soul which once embodied and huddled this place.

It's like they are trying so hard to posses me but even
Their souls have been smouldered to whispers
So thin they ring as mutely as the surrounding mist,
So soft they vibrate akin to an infant’s pulse
Throughout these walls, these scrapyards, these crumbling arcades, this sandbox grey that begs for a scream.
The spirit of a tarantula trembles along my back and grazes it teeth against my shoulderblade,
Preying that I turn to confirm it's being –but it's a game I’ve long grown sick of–


I am the lighthouse man and I ceased having a face long ago.
What I recall of my reflection was a child so young and so sure
Of a different life that

I cannot be sure it's even me.

I am the lighthouse man; a puckered bulb balancing on too-big shoulders, that walked
  through barren flat closes and exited empty handed, the lonely poltergeist,
a bitter flab of skin.

I am the lighthouse man and I am the final Aspen leaf in the pond of the universe,
I see myself reflected in a sole star twirling underfoot and overhead
rowing my ears so thick with disfigured silence so that I wish I was born deaf.
I am the lighthouse man and my mind is a spinning fragment
    my eyes can merely follow and my floating steps merely trail.

It never changes tone here, I can only vaguely trace the time
By the occasional moon. Tonight it shines half chewed,
  Befitting the levelled star a sideways crown.
It is beautiful but I mustn't stop to admire, lest a survivor
Scavenger loses patience withholding the last of their scran.

I am the lighthouse man and I haven't eaten in years.

I am the lighthouse man and I bled for the first time yestardy.
I am the lighthouse man and my bulb ricocheted off the base of my skull
In a telling fairy tale dream. I felt static in my head
And my light's ink spilled across my hands and for a minute I thought
My light had gone out. I tasted blood,
Trickled down from my stinging nose and I had never been so scared.

I am the lighthouse man and I never knew I could die.

I am the lighthouse man. Once the world danced with magic and I was
A walking satellite that grew to want to dissapear.
I am the lighthouse man and my decrepitude is casted in my hands:
Black as the night from the dirt collected over the years.
The few slashes of skin clear enough to see look rust-like and obtrusive, outdone only by
My veins like wonky bruises that vine across the silhouetted bone;
Bridging gear to gear, clinking shivering knuckles
         That want nothing more than to surrender.

But I am only frostbit, not frozen.
Life was and thus must still be.
I am a raindrop, not the whole ocean.

I am a walking lighthouse inspecting and guiding empty seas,
A form without virtue
That ceased feeling it's metallic steps too long ago to recall.
A cubist teardrop falling down a grey giant's cheek,
Waiting to be captured and swallowed.

Or perhaps I am climbing uphill, slowly along the circumference of his forehead.
So slowly I cannot notice the rise. Perhaps I was destined to amble in hypnosis,
En route on this colourless limboid curve until I forget the concept of
             a destination, a soul, a matryr jester to rouse me awake...
             and perhaps it is then that I will be blessed with the heavenly bulb

Of the weeping giant on whom's flesh I disturb.
I am the lighthouse man and I dream of purpose.

I am the the lighthouse man with a penchance to levitate
I am the lighthouse man and I am a God without tool or reason.
I am the lighthouse man and I'll walk this limbo until my feet dissapear.

I am the lighthouse man and I am cursed.
I am the lighthouse man transitioning between lives and never knowing
Causality nor the answer. There are no questions to have;

I am the lighthouse man and I must have been a murderer in my past life.
I am the lighthouse man and I can feel my inner fuses twist,
Falling fainter and fainter by the second.
I am the lighthouse man and I will not make it another night.
I am the lighthouse man and I am a memory-bank full of nothing remarkable.
If I felt this months ago then perhaps I would make due with the my sojourn of an empty house, atop a parked car, and perhaps I would be content with rotting.

But now the moon shines so luminously bright and full and close! So very close!
I am the lighthouse man and I chase the moon.
I am the lighthouse man and I vaguely recall my mother saying 'do not eat the moon,
It will give you nightmares!’ and it all suddenly makes sense now.

The stars are all out tonight and they await my company. I am the lighthouse man and now I run.
I run run run run for the sky in ode to the rest of the bodies that abandoned this place.
“Nullus enim locus sine genio est.”

  Servius.

“La musique,” says Marmontel, in those “Contes
Moraux” which in all our translations we have insisted upon
calling “Moral Tales,” as if in mockery of their
spirit—”la musique est le seul des talens qui
jouisse de lui-meme: tous les autres veulent des
temoins.” He here confounds the pleasure derivable from
sweet sounds with the capacity for creating them. No more
than any other talent, is that for music susceptible
of complete enjoyment where there is no second party to
appreciate its exercise; and it is only in common with other
talents that it produces effects which may be fully
enjoyed in solitude. The idea which the raconteur has
either failed to entertain clearly, or has sacrificed in its
expression to his national love of point, is
doubtless the very tenable one that the higher order of
music is the most thoroughly estimated when we are
exclusively alone. The proposition in this form will be
admitted at once by those who love the lyre for its own sake
and for its spiritual uses. But there is one pleasure still
within the reach of fallen mortality, and perhaps only one,
which owes even more than does music to the accessory
sentiment of seclusion. I mean the happiness experienced in
the contemplation of natural scenery. In truth, the man who
would behold aright the glory of God upon earth must in
solitude behold that glory. To me at least the presence, not
of human life only, but of life, in any other form than that
of the green things which grow upon the soil and are
voiceless, is a stain upon the landscape, is at war with the
genius of the scene. I love, indeed, to regard the dark
valleys, and the gray rocks, and the waters that silently
smile, and the forests that sigh in uneasy slumbers, and the
proud watchful mountains that look down upon all,—I
love to regard these as themselves but the colossal members
of one vast animate and sentient whole—a whole whose
form (that of the sphere) is the most perfect and most
inclusive of all; whose path is among associate planets;
whose meek handmaiden is the moon; whose mediate sovereign
is the sun; whose life is eternity; whose thought is that of
a god; whose enjoyment is knowledge; whose destinies are
lost in immensity; whose cognizance of ourselves is akin
with our own cognizance of the animalculae which
infest the brain, a being which we in consequence regard as
purely inanimate and material, much in the same manner as
these animalculae must thus regard us.

Our telescopes and our mathematical investigations assure us
on every hand, notwithstanding the cant of the more ignorant
of the priesthood, that space, and therefore that bulk, is
an important consideration in the eyes of the Almighty. The
cycles in which the stars move are those best adapted for
the evolution, without collision, of the greatest possible
number of bodies. The forms of those bodies are accurately
such as within a given surface to include the greatest
possible amount of matter; while the surfaces themselves are
so disposed as to accommodate a denser population than could
be accommodated on the same surfaces otherwise arranged. Nor
is it any argument against bulk being an object with God
that space itself is infinite; for there may be an infinity
of matter to fill it; and since we see clearly that the
endowment of matter with vitality is a principle—
indeed, as far as our judgments extend, the leading
principle in the operations of Deity, it is scarcely logical
to imagine it confined to the regions of the minute, where
we daily trace it, and not extending to those of the august.
As we find cycle within cycle without end, yet all revolving
around one far-distant centre which is the Godhead, may we
not analogically suppose, in the same manner, life within
life, the less within the greater, and all within the Spirit
Divine? In short, we are madly erring through self-esteem in
believing man, in either his temporal or future destinies,
to be of more moment in the universe than that vast “clod of
the valley” which he tills and contemns, and to which he
denies a soul, for no more profound reason than that he does
not behold it in operation.

These fancies, and such as these, have always given to my
meditations among the mountains and the forests, by the
rivers and the ocean, a tinge of what the every-day world
would not fail to term the fantastic. My wanderings amid
such scenes have been many and far-searching, and often
solitary; and the interest with which I have strayed through
many a dim deep valley, or gazed into the reflected heaven
of many a bright lake, has been an interest greatly deepened
by the thought that I have strayed and gazed alone.
What flippant Frenchman was it who said, in allusion to the
well known work of Zimmermann, that “la solitude est une
belle chose; mais il faut quelqu’un pour vous dire que la
solitude est une belle chose”? The epigram cannot be
gainsaid; but the necessity is a thing that does not exist.

It was during one of my lonely journeyings, amid a far
distant region of mountain locked within mountain, and sad
rivers and melancholy tarns writhing or sleeping within all,
that I chanced upon a certain rivulet and island. I came
upon them suddenly in the leafy June, and threw myself upon
the turf beneath the branches of an unknown odorous shrub,
that I might doze as I contemplated the scene. I felt that
thus only should I look upon it, such was the character of
phantasm which it wore.

On all sides, save to the west where the sun was about
sinking, arose the verdant walls of the forest. The little
river which turned sharply in its course, and was thus
immediately lost to sight, seemed to have no exit from its
prison, but to be absorbed by the deep green foliage of the
trees to the east; while in the opposite quarter (so it
appeared to me as I lay at length and glanced upward) there
poured down noiselessly and continuously into the valley a
rich golden and crimson waterfall from the sunset fountains
of the sky.

About midway in the short vista which my dreamy vision took
in, one small circular island, profusely verdured, reposed
upon the ***** of the stream.

So blended bank and shadow there, That each seemed pendulous
in air—

so mirror-like was the glassy water, that it was scarcely
possible to say at what point upon the ***** of the emerald
turf its crystal dominion began. My position enabled me to
include in a single view both the eastern and western
extremities of the islet, and I observed a singularly-marked
difference in their aspects. The latter was all one radiant
harem of garden beauties. It glowed and blushed beneath the
eye of the slant sunlight, and fairly laughed with flowers.
The grass was short, springy, sweet-scented, and Asphodel-
interspersed. The trees were lithe, mirthful, *****, bright,
slender, and graceful, of eastern figure and foliage, with
bark smooth, glossy, and parti-colored. There seemed a deep
sense of life and joy about all, and although no airs blew
from out the heavens, yet everything had motion through the
gentle sweepings to and fro of innumerable butterflies, that
might have been mistaken for tulips with wings.

The other or eastern end of the isle was whelmed in the
blackest shade. A sombre, yet beautiful and peaceful gloom,
here pervaded all things. The trees were dark in color and
mournful in form and attitude— wreathing themselves
into sad, solemn, and spectral shapes, that conveyed ideas
of mortal sorrow and untimely death. The grass wore the deep
tint of the cypress, and the heads of its blades hung
droopingly, and hither and thither among it were many small
unsightly hillocks, low and narrow, and not very long, that
had the aspect of graves, but were not, although over and
all about them the rue and the rosemary clambered. The
shades of the trees fell heavily upon the water, and seemed
to bury itself therein, impregnating the depths of the
element with darkness. I fancied that each shadow, as the
sun descended lower and lower, separated itself sullenly
from the trunk that gave it birth, and thus became absorbed
by the stream, while other shadows issued momently from the
trees, taking the place of their predecessors thus entombed.

This idea having once seized upon my fancy greatly excited
it, and I lost myself forthwith in reverie. “If ever island
were enchanted,” said I to myself, “this is it. This is the
haunt of the few gentle Fays who remain from the wreck of
the race. Are these green tombs theirs?—or do they
yield up their sweet lives as mankind yield up their own? In
dying, do they not rather waste away mournfully, rendering
unto God little by little their existence, as these trees
render up shadow after shadow, exhausting their substance
unto dissolution? What the wasting tree is to the water that
imbibes its shade, growing thus blacker by what it preys
upon, may not the life of the Fay be to the death which
engulfs it?”

As I thus mused, with half-shut eyes, while the sun sank
rapidly to rest, and eddying currents careered round and
round the island, bearing upon their ***** large dazzling
white flakes of the bark of the sycamore, flakes which, in
their multiform positions upon the water, a quick
imagination might have converted into anything it pleased;
while I thus mused, it appeared to me that the form of one
of those very Fays about whom I had been pondering, made its
way slowly into the darkness from out the light at the
western end of the island. She stood ***** in a singularly
fragile canoe, and urged it with the mere phantom of an oar.
While within the influence of the lingering sunbeams, her
attitude seemed indicative of joy, but sorrow deformed it as
she passed within the shade. Slowly she glided along, and at
length rounded the islet and re-entered the region of light.
“The revolution which has just been made by the Fay,”
continued I musingly, “is the cycle of the brief year of her
life. She has floated through her winter and through her
summer. She is a year nearer unto death: for I did not fail
to see that as she came into the shade, her shadow fell from
her, and was swallowed up in the dark water, making its
blackness more black.”

And again the boat appeared and the Fay, but about the
attitude of the latter there was more of care and
uncertainty and less of elastic joy. She floated again from
out the light and into the gloom (which deepened momently),
and again her shadow fell from her into the ebony water, and
became absorbed into its blackness. And again and again she
made the circuit of the island (while the sun rushed down to
his slumbers), and at each issuing into the light there was
more sorrow about her person, while it grew feebler and far
fainter and more indistinct, and at each passage into the
gloom there fell from her a darker shade, which became
whelmed in a shadow more black. But at length, when the sun
had utterly departed, the Fay, now the mere ghost of her
former self, went disconsolately with her boat into the
region of the ebony flood, and that she issued thence at all
I cannot say, for darkness fell over all things, and I
beheld her magical figure no more.
David Chin Oct 2011
This feeling inside of me
Is burning stronger
And stronger
And stronger
I tried to tell you how I feel
But I keep on growing weaker
And weaker
And weaker
Whenever our eyes meet
My heart sinks deeper and deeper
I yearn to be with you
Forever
And ever
I tried to say, “I love you”
But my voice keeps on getting fainter
And fainter
And fainter
My hands sweat with anxiety
And my mind is nowhere to be found
I search for that special someone
Near and far
Above and below
And she is standing there right in front of me
I feel like I wanna cry
I feel like I wanna die
I feel like I wanna scream
Because all I feel is love
But love has taken my voice and my heart
So instead I will wear my heart
I will wear my soul
I will wear my love
In red
959

A loss of something ever felt I—
The first that I could recollect
Bereft I was—of what I knew not
Too young that any should suspect

A Mourner walked among the children
I notwithstanding went about
As one bemoaning a Dominion
Itself the only Prince cast out—

Elder, Today, a session wiser
And fainter, too, as Wiseness is—
I find myself still softly searching
For my Delinguent Palaces—

And a Suspicion, like a Finger
Touches my Forehead now and then
That I am looking oppositely
For the site of the Kingdom of Heaven—
315

He fumbles at your Soul
As Players at the Keys
Before they drop full Music on—
He stuns you by degrees—
Prepares your brittle Nature
For the Ethereal Blow
By fainter Hammers—further heard—
Then nearer—Then so slow
Your Breath has time to straighten—
Your Brain—to bubble Cool—
Deals—One—imperial—Thunderbolt—
That scalps your naked Soul—

When Winds take Forests in the Paws—
The Universe—is still—
L Feb 2016
You were my beacon
as I was yours
You were my guide
in this endless tunnel
this engulfing darkness
And I was yours
But farther and farther, you moved
fainter and fainter, you became
And as I follow you
I grew dimmer
Dimmer until
I was a beacon no more
I kept still and watched
Watched you til you were
a beacon no more
Just a small patch of
A small patch of light
A fading light
A faded light
314

Nature—sometimes sears a Sapling—
Sometimes—scalps a Tree—
Her Green People recollect it
When they do not die—

Fainter Leaves—to Further Seasons—
Dumbly testify—
We—who have the Souls—
Die oftener—Not so vitally—
Nash Wolfe Dec 2014
A dedication to a Lost Love.

If only my simple words could captivate every emotion that I am trying to convey. To summarize an illustrious story which I hold close to my dearest heart; then I would give you the entire world and then even more. From the deepest skies I would soar, just to bestow a higher power that you deserve; I would revive our love and mark every ocean shore for all to glance upon. My heart sets on fire and burns in blazing flames every time I hear you say “I love you”. I lose control, my nerves kick in and I am frozen within time; with you everything seems endless. The taste of your sensational kiss halts my heart; for when we depart, I hold on to that very last kiss and cleanse to it compassionately; the thought of you ponders everlasting.




The night is glorious; as they lay beneath Earth’s stars and galaxy. He comforts her and clings to her compassionately. He rolls his love on her back, as he blankets her in his arms; he glances through her glamorous eyes and finally spoke with a smile. “I see everything through your eyes. I see all that’s dark and brutal, to all that’s beautiful and filled with light. I see my whole world through your eyes.”
    
       She looks at him with silence as she tries to find the words to speak; then in a moment the words filter out like a waterfall. “For years I could only wonder how your kiss tasted, your lips against mine. Your smell eluded me, like I was knocking on Heaven’s door, just waiting to see the angels fluttering, an exquisite sight to see, an incredible beauty, to love unconditionally; a romance that is endless. Through your soul I can read an illustrious story.”

     He pulls her close; where he can hear every breath that circulates through her lungs. Then he gives her a soft kiss and a flutter of butterflies pours out of his stomach. “Our lips touch and it’s like a surge of electricity between our bodies.”

     “Gravity stops existing. We float through mid air. Flying through Heaven, our lips are still connected.”

     Kevin’s heart skips a beat as it starts to pulse rapidly; pondering over the love of his life, he only wishes to freeze time. “We float through space and time, an infinite dream, free to create our own reality; just you and me.”

She turns away from Kevin as she looks out in the wilderness. A cold breeze shifts towards her, as brisk bumps crawl up her spine. Everything shifts away; the open sky becomes more transparent. The moon still beams overhead; echo of howls vibrate through the wind. The silence between them leaves them both helpless and inert. She stands underneath a tree; the shadow it caste conceals her image. The leaves ruffle the peaceful atmosphere, with each crinkle and niche. The grass swiftly moves under Kevin’s body as he remains on the ground alone.

She glances at him persist, as his eyes connect with hers. They exchange each other’s worlds. Then she starts to dream off in an oblivious state of mind. She quietly speaks to Kevin. “As we drift together through the bewilder reality, we are bound by vines weaving around one another. Correlating a sense of compassion, as we endeavor this sensation, I get lost forever.”

Kevin stands up as he reaches for her soft hand and pulls it close to his chest; every beat of his heart she felt through the palm of her hand, then he began to speak softly. “Forever lost in your eyes like an infinite dream, the most amazing fantasy, our bodies weaving together, our lives intertwine like vines on a building.”

As she grasps his hands she stands bold; her eyes become cloudy, the night manifest deeper. Eagerly she speaks. “I pledge to this raven that stalks the night and watches over our bound vines, preying on its victim, not wanting to lose sight of this *******. It lingers with emotion. For our vibes are so strong that it paralyzes every eye.” She glares directly into Kevin’s eyes. “They choke because they need air to breathe.  We memorize them with our feelings’.
    
     Kevin’s eyes shift as they change from gray to a deep green; he becomes weak as his knees break beneath him. Slowly he loses balance, but before he falls his love catches him; closely they stand together, their strength is upheld by each other. Kevin lightly touches his love’s face and deeply speaks. “We steal breaths from those around us to feed our imaginable love growing ever longer day by day”.
  
     Nearly out of breath, she tenaciously speaks to him. “Unstoppable, undefeatable, I’m breathing slowly as I get closer to a man that sustains a capacity that is like no other”. She grabs onto his chest tightly not wanting to ever let go. “Our love burns hotter than fire and can freeze your heart like ice. What we share with each other you can only seek it once in a life time”.

       A light breeze fills the atmosphere around them; the dark starry night still covers the sky. He stands up, leaving her side. She remains inert on the ground as he stands by a tree grasping for the words to rebut. “It burns ever hotter and freezes ever colder. Growing ever stronger, able to stop an army and break the strongest barriers, never faltering jolts of lightening across the blue sky, able to conquer all in the path of this love”.

She rises to him, as they share a kiss. Their life changes, the sun finally peeks over the horizon creating a new day.

They go their separate ways; as Kevin let’s go of his love’s hand and kisses it one more time. He walks alone with tension in his mind. Finally he reaches home and immediately goes straight to his room.
    
The window in Kevin’s room blows a cold breeze; curtains flutter as his door slams shut. Kevin only hears silence; a pin drops to his floor and lingers through his chamber. The moon’s light is the only source that shines for his sight. Kevin lays in his prison, alone pondering over his life.

“So much going through my mind, my head is spinning in circles; I am losing my balance and I am about to break. Circumstances are not where they should be; my life is slowly crashing. Everything is changing so fast, I don’t know where to catch a grasp. My strength is going down the drain and I don’t know how much longer I can hang on. My paths are caving in; every road feels block. I toss and turn through out the night, just to escape my oblivious mind. I take one step forward to fall three steps back”.

Kevin rolls over on his back, as his mind and heart contemplates over his emotion that tears him apart inch by inch. His insides are ripping out and he holds them in his hands. Kevin’s stomach turns as his heart explodes. His blood pressure rises; then he sinks into a deep inner thought.

      
“When I break, when I fall, when I lose myself and tumble, if I give all I am, when I’m ready to take, will I be strong enough to fight, as I wait? If I search will I find the answers that are hidden? All that I have forsaken, when I am expose to the openness, expose to the brokenness.”

       Kevin’s eyes grow tighter as he shields them shut. Complete darkness surrounds him; Hell burning up in flames touches his skin, red marks crosses his flesh. The heat rises, Kevin’s walls begin to melt; as his life crumbles beneath his feet. He still searches for a higher power to relieve his despair. Kevin’s mind is screaming out and silence falls to the ground. He lays on his casket alone; as he murmurs to himself.

“Here I am it feels like I am not breathing, like I am only dreaming! When I sacrifice, in order to let go, when I lose at every battle, my heart gets fainter as you get closer. I lose control, my body in despair, shaky and scared. I tremble with each step, afraid to fail, to make a mistake. Make me feel like you did when I first gazed through your eyes, I was seeing through Heaven’s gate. The angels flying based upon fate, I get lost in them for days, like pain doesn’t exist on the prosperity of serenity.”

     Kevin falls dead, as he drifts away in a dream. Clouds fill his mind, and then draw blank. Through a far distant Kevin hears a faint voice. The sound of an angel intervenes in his head. She creeps closer and her image starts to become clearer. Her skins like a smooth mocha cream; her eyes cleanses with the night, beauty that he has never seen. Kevin’s eyes become focuses on the angel; as she draws nearer. She opens her arms and softly speaks. “Fall into my arms gently, let me take control. M arms will be your security; your protection to keep you safe in this world. Let me guide and lead the way, a new beginning to another chapter. We can create a life together, fast or slow. I will ease your oblivious mind and erase all of your pain.” The angel comes closer to Kevin, as her hair blows in front of her face. She stares at him then softly conveys. “I will show you a form of love that you desired for so long; there are no limits to this sensation. We are free to take it and run, together we unit as one.”

     Kevin sits in polarization as her glances at the angel. He trembles with each word. “I want to wrap you in my arms and keep you in my warm embrace; to hold you there till the morning light breaks through the window. I will blanket you in my warmth that is my everlasting love”.

     She lays in Kevin's arms as his body intertwines around hers. The atmosphere gets cooler; the clouds are still flying through mid-air. She grabs his hand tightly. “Let’s keep each other company and share a deep compassion, traveling through countries marking territories. Let the moon be the only light, it beams softly on your face. I'm allowed to see your mystical eyes; they tell a long story”.

     Kevin falls back, and the angel follows too. “I will take you through the highest mountains, the lowest valleys, across the coldest tundra’s and the hottest deserts. We will go through the deepest jungles, and the furthest reaches of the ocean, from the rings of Saturn, back to the grass of Iowa, without leaving our room”.

  “Through the great valley we will go; I will follow you till the end of time. You are worth fighting, let all the pain and heart ache subside. Our love is much greater than a storm that roars thunder and strikes lightening.” The angel slides her hand across Kevin’s face; he feels her warm embrace through the palm of her hand.

     Kevin closes his eyes and words unravel within time. “Our love reaches farther than the longest roads; it’s deeper than the deepest ocean. It is greater than the greatest features of human history, more amazing than the pyramids, and larger than life of the greatest man.” He pauses and takes in a deep breath and allows it to circulate deep within.

     The angel flutters her beauty to Kevin, as his eyes widen with every movement to makes. She solemnly floats away, but she still remains within Kevin’s sight. She quietly murmurs. “Let’s unravel this story and see how great this love really is, unlock every bind that once trapped our hearts. It can finally be released and freed. Lets forget about the past and the pain it once caused, for nothing else matters. We pulled through this far; still happy as a child’s laughter, withering deeper to a place like no other”. She takes a quick pause as she grasps for air. “The rivers flow much deeper, waterfalls flow much heavier, and affection growing greater. For it never decays as it ages; it just becomes more valuable through every night and day.”

     Memorized by every word she conveys, Kevin expresses his love like never before. He shifts to his left side and holds on to his treasure tighter. “I am ready to explore the love we have like the tombs of the ancient kings. I’m ready to take the twist and turns, never knowing what is yet to come, only knowing we’ll be side by side the whole way through, till the end of time, just you and I, on our road of love” Kevin’s heart aches with  prosperity, explosion that is within his soul. His body shakes and quivers every time his heart makes a beat. He looks at this creation as if she is all he could ever see. Kevin kisses her gently; his heart races more. Their lips disconnect and a light surrounds them. He stands behind the angel and whispers in her ears. “My soul is yours, along with my heart for you to take, to do what you wish. My love for you can not be measured. I hope to be in your heart for the rest of days”.

       Kevin’s arms remain blanket around the angel, the night that covers the starry sky. They both look out in the clouds where peace is found. She turns around in Kevin’s barrier and gently the crisp of her fingertips glides through his hair, the lips of the angel moves like calmness of an ocean. “Time can’t capture every split moment. I deprive your touch, your love, never wanting to let go. I still held on waiting for the day. Years passed over and we reunited; we picked up where we left off as if we never lived years without each other”.

     Kevin reminisces for a moment and draws himself back to the past. He stands by the angel as the memories play over in his head. “Days came and went and still I thought of you; the months came and gone and still I thought about you; the years rolled by and by and still I thought about you. Then I thought of you no more because you were in my arms again. You and I entangle like vines climbing up the wall, wrapping around each other”. The angel gives Kevin a light kiss and says her goodbye. He watches her leave his presents then says, “Wait, my love when I will see you again?” The silence answer Kevin’s question
The clouds wither away; the bright sky turns dark and gray. Everything around Kevin vanishes, then a cloud of smoke appears and a whisper conveys “Open your eyes and you will see me soon”. Kevin immediately opens his eyes and there his love was lying next to him. They both lay there sleepless and inert, as they fall asleep together. Their dreams intertwine with one another creating serenity.

         The waves collide as the ocean breaks to sonority then to calmness. A crack in which divides Heaven and Hell, with all the immoral things some how beauty is still found. There is a place where there is peace known as serenity. It helps people see everything; as the ocean departs and a new wave deprives the collision roars till the end of time.

      Kevin took a deep breath and let it lingered in the wind; then took a glance at the love of his life and spoke alluring words. "Walk through the veil from reality, to make believe. Allow your mind to drift into serenity pieces of you and me, together to keep in your heart and in your mind. I will show you the path to serenity."

       The love of his life pondered over Kevin’s words then responded back: "Will you drift with me to a place where there is serenity? A sacred piece that lets us be together, where there is no pain or suffering. Only the monuments that represent all that is make believe, a separation from reality.” She pushed her hair aside. “Where dreams guide the way, saving a memory to capture and remember. Will you grant me this serenity? Walk with me to this place that is unknown."

     Kevin took a few steps forward, and then paused. "This place is known to me. It’s anywhere that you’re with me and anyplace that I am with you, in the darkest dark or the brightest bright, the highest high or the lowest low. Serenity is you with me; happiness is me with you."

     She tightly closed her eyes and drifted away to a paradise in her oblivious mind. "I search for serenity when I reach my darkest hour. When the sun sets and ends another day. It’s never too dark when you’re with me. You’re the greatest light source that I will ever need.” She smiled at Kevin. “Happiness is a term that portrays an emotion where at times it’s inde
Declan Quinn Dec 2015
Yesterday’s thoughts like white-water crashing
These are fainter today, like a babbling brook
Not quite abated but more still.
Allowing thought and deed to harmonise,
Even for an hour, I’ll take it.

The image of my loved ones etched,
My child, now a woman, forefront always
The absolute best of us personified
Love is the unbreakable bond between us
Come feel, hear the quiet and smile with me.
Struggling, and faint, and fainter didst thou wane,
O Moon! and round thee all thy starry train
Came forth to help thee, with half-open eyes,
And trembled every one with still surprise,
That the black Spectre should have dared assail
Their beauteous queen and seize her sacred veil.
lowercasemmmmmm Aug 2015
honour thy heart and live in light
so dark the sky from which I fell
too much cruelty that fuses delight
a circumstance of love too lost to be found
assist my aim and gracious attempts
ingrained into the valves and pumps
this pointlessness is a sweated labour
when angry blood courses and thuds

once is too many a time for ****** eyes
this world of vagrants sits in mourning
a bowl of pea-wet and a pie crust
no meat for the bones under the awning
a barren landscape is the truest love
wherein the shadows sits betrayal
woe constructs its own listlessness
and its tears rust its own cross and nails

patterns swirl in front of my face
this torment floats a strange abandon
ceilings and floors become the same
thoughts lead to old ancient pheromones
and I can't function here anymore
the mechanics of me are shutting down
I'll fade into your grainy sepia folklore
growing fainter each day I'm not around

enemies hold your heart at first
cradling your love for dreams and hope
then they make you slake with thirst
as you waltz their knife-edged rope
they watch the campfire of your curse
boil the water dry so that crops will fail
its smoke makes clouds that rise to burst
this chimera rests in a bridal veil

listlessness, its song so dire and cold
whispers of things that fell at hurdles
when glitches burnt the souls of old
too familiar, it turns love to a curdle
in the dark truth dissolves to dream
no hope to reconcile its open slice
death by the sugar of its flowing cream
where the mind and body splice

emissary of love and fond affection
its beat and thud are gentle barbs of ice
I feel this palpable rummage of heart
your fingers claw my souls flesh
like a reaper trailing its dying game
I feel your wish to eradicate our faith
we are no more, though we were once the same
no more memories made that were laden

sleek and slow this slender birds chirp
up where the windows groan ajar
its acid tongue finds my shut ears
prizing them open with its soulful bar
its a lustful rogues apprentice of a tune
conjuring images of lands afar
still there's gloom that weighs this anecdote
it scrapes its nails hard against my ire

sour flavour that I'm forced to savour
this grim shank to the bellies soft soil
it hurts a short while and then ebbs far
to return with gusto and a zeal to boil
this bleakness of soul is petrifying
it turns hearts to broken smashed stones
I will die in the shell of adamant misery
and my ghost shall beware of its runes

no more this foul dalliance
this gruesome tango in dark dank corners
we'll glide the wood of our ballroom
and become as huddled as we can take
our breath in each others eyes
our candlelit faces fainter and hued
we both endure the pain of existence
knowing blackness after light ensues

eternity wont bleed me away and dry
my arrogance wont let me die a thwarted cad
its witchcraft whittles a fine effigy of me
and all the hopes that bridge its span
I've listened to the crack of our thunder
taken your lightning into my eyes
we love ourselves with each others hearts
by the neglect of a reasonable goodbye

so fine a tale of cut grass and misery
a shambolic deuce that ends in parody
we will live out fine years as nobody's
and die in the quarters of vile obscurity
we are what we want to be and own
we're creases in the fabric of our reality
each wearing our own invisibility well
the prognosis is bleak, eternal frailty

seeds blown by a cough of the wind
it'll never know how it made us dance
we'll take root and flourish for awhile
and if we're lucky a heart we'll entrance
taking root in the soil that we land on
we'll germinate and become our begin
and recycle this hopelessness that haunts
that creeps upon our minds like sin
it's a piece about my disillusionment with life, seen through my jaded and alcoholic eyes. Where I'm trying to piece together where it all wrong, grasping desperately for something to assist me in changing things but getting nowhere. It took me years to realise that the decision to change was mine all along, I just couldn't see it through the tears.
Ella Aug 2012
363
I dream about you.
Do you know how rare that is, how taxing, how emotional?
Or do you just expect me to be here, always, waiting for you
Refusing to let my life move on when we both know
We both know that there’s nothing left of you
That it’s time to let you go.
 
No matter how many ships we could sail together
How many stars we wished upon
How many times we said goodbye, hello, goodbye
Is there really anything left, is there, is there
All my memories of you disappeared, replaced by new memories
Of a life without you in it.
 
“Do you still sing?” the cat asks the bird
“Even though you
You’re stuck in a cage where I can’t get to you, get to you”
The bird doesn’t reply
He doesn’t have the will to anymore
He doesn’t have the will, the will
 
Is it a bad thing to say I don’t miss you?
Even though how much we’ve been through, so much

And all I can do is see you sometimes
Sometimes, growing fainter, fainter
Only in dreamland?
“Will you still sing,” the cat asks the bird
“Even though I don’t want you to?”
 
Can you hear me
Can you hear, hear me
In dreamland?
"Can you still sing?" the cat meows comfortably, bored.
 
And all I can do is wonder where the words went
And realize that they were there all along.

"Don't lie.  There are no lies here."
Outforth bursts a song like no other.
It’s only a simple phrase I need to say
Even though I just wasted two hundred and forty-four words
On a cause that was lost awhile ago.

The tendons in my fingers stretching,
Stretching like they never have before, because there’s no form here
There’s no will, want
Assumption, annihilation, amplification
Do you wear flannel still?
Or are you stuck in hospital scrubs?
I think I’ve exhausted all my questions.

"I give up," the cat states, walking off, tail swinging in the air.
The bird sits quietly
And sits
And waits
And says nothing.
 
Three hundred and sixty-three words now
And all I meant to say was goodbye.
Thin are the night-skirts left behind
      By daybreak hours that onward creep,
      And thin, alas! the shred of sleep
That wavers with the spirit’s wind:
But in half-dreams that shift and roll
      And still remember and forget,
My soul this hour has drawn your soul
           A little nearer yet.

Our lives, most dear, are never near,
      Our thoughts are never far apart,
      Though all that draws us heart to heart
Seems fainter now and now more clear.
To-night Love claims his full control,
      And with desire and with regret
My soul this hour has drawn your soul
           A little nearer yet.

Is there a home where heavy earth
      Melts to bright air that breathes no pain,
      Where water leaves no thirst again
And springing fire is Love’s new birth?
If faith long bound to one true goal
      May there at length its hope beget,
My soul that hour shall draw your soul
           For ever nearer yet.
Jeremy Duff Mar 2014
A purple liquid drips
and with each drop the sound of discontent grows louder.
     Forming a puddle on the the carpet that grows and grows and grows
and soon I will drown in it, soon I will drown in her.
     Soon, her green eyes will be all I see and not just all I yearn to see.

The purple liquid
creates an audible thump as it splashes down on the carpet which is now covered with an inch and a half of the stuff.
     The thump makes it easier to sleep at night; it slows my heartbeat.
Her lips whisper to me as I sleep and I long for them to be upon my neck.
      My fingers grasp the sheet but in my mind they are running through her hair and down her back.

Now, my bedroom is filled with the purple liquid, only two feet of air separating the ceiling and the top of the purple swimming pool.
     As I sleep, she sleeps with me and as our fingers touch
she exhales a blast of the cool purple liquid.
     Without cease it fills my lungs and her whispers grow fainter
and her touch sweeter.
Viseract Nov 2015
When time is running out
Do you hear the ticking?
Maybe you don't; so bored are you
That you resort to pen-lid clicking

In a class full of students,
Can you hear the clock tick-tock?
It comes from our hearts
It enters without a knock

Can you hear the life fade from others?
Concentrate hard enough, and I think you can
Chance and fate will have their ways
They've already drawn up your lifetime plan

The louder it is, the longer you will live
Your inner clock hasn't wound down
The fainter it is, like little claw clicks,
And you haven't long until your one with the sound
OnwardFlame Dec 2015
If I could compile every one of my thoughts
My dreams, my moments of joy, even hate
In the palms of my two long lean hands
I would examine them with antique binoculars
Just like I was a patron of the arts, a feather crown atop my head
Full length gloves, tulle skirt bouncing around
My most intimate parts.

I asked my papa today what he thought of you
Walking and parading around in the Alabama sunshine
Everyone has their story, their spine
We talked about you, among you, what you lacked
For what seemed like long
I remember when I was just a few years younger
I felt this need, this severe urgency
To get out a certain amount of information,
With anecdotes, to convey
Make what I felt, what I had to say known
That need still resides in me a little
But I see the desire for acceptance, validation
Grow fainter and fainter.

I shake my head away at negative or fearful thinking
And I will just start to feel a moment of positivity
Self love, letting go--
But knowledge, I know you haven't let me go yet
You've got more to say, you are gonna wanna corner me
Once more
I do, I fear for me
It makes me furrow my brow and bite my lip
Sigh heavily
For my spirit, my soul, my sensuality
Only to let it turn into an amused laughter
Hilarious disappointment
I'm such a spoiled *****
But ****, I've got to be the one
To make you and your impractical love
Stay the ******* **** **** AWAY from me.

Please.

My past reached out to me today in a number of ways
Driving around in my little red Jetta
I was the queen of the town
I am the queen of the town
I am the queen of my own life.

My memory floods back to that singular moment
A sticky note, on my wall
You showed me, as if it were a medal
You were supposed to be by my side that night
You claimed to be so proud
But I remember you were so inappropriately playful
Grabbing me around the party, like a little boy
In a lingerie store.
Your voice raspy and ringing with
What you thought I wanted to hear
And it was
But you could never really follow through.

I hate your ex-girlfriend.
I hate all of them.
I hate that they still adore you
I hate that they keep up with you
That you and your little incestuous posse
Still try to dance the same dance
Just grow the **** up.

But my hate, my rage, the betrayal
I have known and known again
I released it into the super moon tonight
You told me tonight, while in your Catholic church, no doubt
That you hoped I saw it, that its beautiful
As my mother put it in her deep Southern drawl:
"Branded forever."
Branded with ink and haunted by nature's night.

I stared deeply up at that moon
My father thought I was taking a picture, I looked so long
But really
All I saw were flashes of images, your voice
You calling out the name you gave me
Again and again
And how I always knew, in the back of my mind
That was fond for you, but not really until the very end
That my hands, my finger tips
Were always mid
Slip.
Aaron Blair Nov 2012
The river’s still up in the park,
and brown, drowning the swingset,
eddying around the bottom of the slide,
like a trapdoor out of childhood.
I never needed one. I used to dream
of the waters sweeping over my head
and now I remember the way blood looked
circling the drain, fainter and fainter
pink and then gone, lost forever.
I wonder how it would have felt,
to never know the deeper pools,
to never be dragged down into the darkness
that lies beneath the surface,
the unending roiling of the sea inside.
I bite my tongue, turn the saliva red,
so that even my mouth is full of dark water,
and I keep the words to myself,
trapped behind the blades of my teeth,
locked in the viscous fluid behind my eyes.
Simon Clark Aug 2012
Listen,
It beats,
Steady,
Controlled,
But,
Irregular,
It goes.

Listen,
My heart,
Changes,
Pattern,
Stopped,
Fainter; softer,
It slows.

Listen,
It beats,
Even,
Controlled,
Yet,
Irregular,
It knows.

Listen,
My heart,
Changes,
Pattern,
Stopped,
My world; my life,
It slows.

Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.
written in 2009
me Dec 2013
M - Many beautiful talents did you have before they drown in a bottle and disappeared from your children’s eyes

O - Outrageous pain did you create for yourself and those who tried hard to love you

T - Tears that were shed as the tidal wave which flowed from a bottle swept over your own life as well as others near you, who were thrown against the rocks of life

H - Hope that waned, its light growing fainter as the years grew weary

E - Effacing the difficult memories hidden deep trying to sort them from the …. others? Trying hard to fine the others. I know they must be there …..somewhere?

R - Resolve that I will never repeat the environment in which I tried to grow, putting it to rest inside my soul, giving that which I so craved, but didn’t know
This is the Arsenal. From floor to ceiling,
    Like a huge *****, rise the burnished arms;
But from their silent pipes no anthem pealing
    Startles the villages with strange alarms.

Ah! what a sound will rise, how wild and dreary,
    When the death-angel touches those swift keys!
What loud lament and dismal Miserere
    Will mingle with their awful symphonies!

I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus,
    The cries of agony, the endless groan,
Which, through the ages that have gone before us,
    In long reverberations reach our own.

On helm and harness rings the Saxon hammer,
    Through Cimbric forest roars the Norseman’s song,
And loud, amid the universal clamor,
    O’er distant deserts sounds the Tartar gong.

I hear the Florentine, who from his palace
    Wheels out his battle-bell with dreadful din,
And Aztec priests upon their teocallis
    Beat the wild war-drums made of serpent’s skin;

The tumult of each sacked and burning village;
    The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns;
The soldiers’ revels in the midst of pillage;
    The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;

The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,
    The rattling musketry, the clashing blade;
And ever and anon, in tones of thunder
    The diapason of the cannonade.

Is it, O man, with such discordant noises,
    With such accursed instruments as these,
Thou drownest Nature’s sweet and kindly voices,
    And jarrest the celestial harmonies?

Were half the power, that fills the world with terror,
    Were half the wealth bestowed on camps and courts,
Given to redeem the human mind from error,
    There were no need of arsenals or forts:

The warrior’s name would be a name abhorred!
    And every nation, that should lift again
Its hand against a brother, on its forehead
    Would wear forevermore the curse of Cain!

Down the dark future, through long generations,
    The echoing sounds grow fainter and then cease;
And like a bell, with solemn, sweet vibrations,
    I hear once more the voice of Christ say, “Peace!”

Peace! and no longer from its brazen portals
    The blast of War’s great ***** shakes the skies!
But beautiful as songs of the immortals,
    The holy melodies of love arise.
I die every single day. It comes slowly, gas leaking out of a tank; a river drying up to a trickle. It has taken years to notice, but here I am: On empty. In a muddy riverbed.
    Standing on the short timeline of my life, I look back at the man of the past. The man is not myself, and yet he is more complete than me. He is younger – yes – but brimming with delight. He knows nothing of Walls and Comments and Likes, and yet he is whole. He has no outlet for his happiness other than his own physical canvas. His sadness is absolute and crushing, but it belongs to him.
I am not he.
I am the autumn of his soul.
There is an emptiness inside me.
    It has not grown like the lines on my face nor the aches in my bones. It is something immeasurable.  
    I want to step out of my own identity.
    I want to live in a construct that is more unique than my own.
    We talk of living vicariously through others, but I live vicariously through myself. I live ten feet behind and thirty seconds after my own person. I watch the man in front of me go through every motion, and I feel nothing. I notate the changes, categorize the achievements, collate the emotions, and I feel nothing. On paper, I look quite good. Great things make headlines. Pictures show unforgettable memories, laughter, joy, and contentment.
    And every feeling of inadequacy, vulnerability, shame, doubt, and fear is greeted with a blind eye.
    The more my construct grows, the more I diminish.
    I am the Portrait of Dorian Gray, reversed.
    Each day the picture is more successful, happy, wealthy, and loved.
    And the man weakens and decays.
    I am frightened of what I’ve become.  
    If there is a way to halt this, I spend every day searching for it. Perhaps, in moments of looking into another’s eyes, I can hide from nothing. At those times, the construct falls away, and the man on the timeline comes crashing into the present.
    I wonder who will greet me in the morning. Will the Man diminish, or will the Portrait grow fainter instead?
Originally published by The Rain, Party, and Disaster Society - rpdsociety.com
255

To die—takes just a little while—
They say it doesn’t hurt—
It’s only fainter—by degrees—
And then—it’s out of sight—

A darker Ribbon—for a Day—
A Crape upon the Hat—
And then the pretty sunshine comes—
And helps us to forget—

The absent—mystic—creature—
That but for love of us—
Had gone to sleep—that soundest time—
Without the weariness—
Lainrz Jan 2014
i lost you in the hallways
groping hands reaching for me
singing psalms of the devil
punishing me
i welcome it
go into the dark
one footstep echoes like a hundred in my ears
louder than my heart
softer than my breathing
corrupt lungs on fire
i run from the demons
my demons
the walls are dripping
blood and tears and all things captivating and corroding
blue and euphoric
is hell my sanctuary?
home is the chest of a devil
a devil in my head
the voices screaming
don't go
i leave and pay no heed
warnings growing fainter
and fainter
the dark angel welcomes me
my dark angel
my eyes glaze over and my blood runs cold
the sky is falling
falling on me
my eyes and mind are so far gone
i forgot to say goodbye
what a wonderful thing
how many ways could i possibly show you
that i'm sorry?

e.s.s.
The twentieth year is well nigh past,
Since first our sky was overcast;
Ah, would that this might be the last!
My Mary!

Thy spirits have a fainter flow,
I see thee daily weaker grow--
'Twas my distress that brought thee low,
My Mary!

Thy needles, once a shining store,
For my sake restless heretofore,
Now rust disus'd, and shine no more,
My Mary!

For though thou gladly wouldst fulfil
The same kind office for me still,
Thy sight now seconds not thy will,
My Mary!

But well thou play'dst the housewife's part,
And all thy threads with magic art
Have wound themselves about this heart,
My Mary!

Thy indistinct expressions seem
Like language utter'd in a dream;
Yet me they charm, whate'er the theme,
My Mary!

Thy silver locks, once auburn bright,
Are still more lovely in my sight
Than golden beams of orient light,
My Mary!

For, could I view nor them nor thee,
What sight worth seeing could I see?
The sun would rise in vain for me,
My Mary!

Partakers of thy sad decline,
Thy hands their little force resign;
Yet gently press'd, press gently mine,
My Mary!

Such feebleness of limbs thou prov'st,
That now at ev'ry step thou mov'st
Upheld by two; yet still thou lov'st,
My Mary!

And still to love, though press'd with ill,
In wintry age to feel no chill,
My Mary!

But ah! by constant heed I know,
How oft the sadness that I show
Transforms thy smiles to looks of woe,
My Mary!

And should my future lot be cast
With much resemblance of the past,
Thy worn-out heart will break at last,
My Mary!
Fluffy Dec 2010
I searched for these words up in the attic
with narrow ribbons of enlightenment streaming
through all-too-small windows
igniting the drifting dust specks on fire,
and on the streets in the gutters
that were gloom-spattered with murky water lunging
towards the grated storm guards
as if they were salvation.
I scrounged through soaked and disintegrating cardboard boxes
bearing the letters L O S T A R T S
and old, musty and molded trunks
that had broken locks and missing keys.
I dug them out of  soft-cloth linens, carefully selected them
from heaping mounds of scrap
-like sifting through a junk yard-
to find those precious bits of silver,
sweet iridescent bubbles
encasing so delicately words like
"language" and "cellar."
I gathered these knic-knacks and baubles
and I alighted them with utmost care
through winding black back streets in my little burlap bag
to my borrowed safe-haven room. And without
turning on the lights,
the door was shut and stopped and I was perched
with great secrecy,
cross-legged upon my bird's nest of a bed,
daintily extracting each little orb
and examining them and all their wonder.
Tri-dimensional little things, that, no matter how you turned them,
seemed always to be a bi-dimensional halo of pale, golden light.
They shone, each minute embryo, like an old-time city lamp,
before such evil things as electricity came
and robbed them of a candle's beauty.
And its core, as is true with humans, is its most glorious aspect.
There is a transparent ocean in there,
with roiling waves that spin the currents
and coax every particle to circulate.
And caught in the eye of that undersea tornado are flecks of glitter,
so tiny that you would not be aware of them at all
were it not for the magnificent glimmer that they sparked,
magnifying and throwing back the fainter glow
of that ethereal encircling band.
Pixies that danced at the autumn festival.

I found these words for you,
broken and perfect and shining,
and collected them on a shelf where I could view them
before I handed them over to you.
I collected them with you in mind.
Can’t you tell?
I found words like “lustrous” and “lust”
because they reminded me of you.
I arranged them sporadically,
and smiled to see “alabaster princess”
sitting unintentionally before my eyes.
And how you are my Alabaster Princess.
But oh dearest-mine, be wary of how you find these words.
Use them sparingly, and do not tarnish them.
Keep them like nuns keep themselves: ******.
If you must write them,
then write them in pretty hand-made inks,
and decorate each letter with dips and swirls, each letter a flourish.
And if you must utter them,
say them quietly, and in simple complementary sentences.
You can be Kennedy for a day,
or speak softly and let them be their own big stick.
Keep them uncommon, like you are uncommon,
and know when the repetition of weaker words can make them herculean.
Guard these words with all your strength:
with that sword hanging deftly on your wall,
with that letter-opener on your kitchen table,
with that pocket knife in your favorite pair of jeans.
Those words will save us one day,
once the world has reverted back to an aristocracy.
With that noble face of yours and this clever brain of mine, love,
we’ll con them into making us their master,
gold and land or no.
even if the sole things we own are our names.
And we’ll teach them again how to speak,
with all the sweetheart mightiness of poetry that speech was intended to have.
And we will learn to bow with all the eloquence of B.C. bible writing.
Machiavelli never saw rulers like us.

We’ll cry like the Devil on a Sunday morning
for the alteration in our names from D’evil,
and whomever first declared “they’re there yonder to get their ***!” shall know my wrath
(although that may have been me).
Parlez vous Français?
Non.
These words that I pillaged
from the mouths of great stone grave monuments,
I hope that you will remember them well.
I hope that you will pour over them
and gaze at them in all of the bedazzled stupor that I did.
And once upon a time,
when children loved to read
and sought the same type of affection that I have at last found in you,
when even the Greek gods were playing with pens and devising an alphabet,
I sat there on rocky shore, seasoning with saltwater,
drawing with my toe under the waterline,
your face.
Pretty as a picture,
and worth a thousand words.
(c) 2006- From I Don't Know These Words
Oh! thou that roll’st above thy glorious Fire,
Round as the shield which grac’d my godlike Sire,
Whence are the beams, O Sun! thy endless blaze,
Which far eclipse each minor Glory’s rays?
Forth in thy Beauty here thou deign’st to shine!
Night quits her car, the twinkling stars decline;
Pallid and cold the Moon descends to cave
Her sinking beams beneath the Western wave;
But thou still mov’st alone, of light the Source—
Who can o’ertake thee in thy fiery course?
Oaks of the mountains fall, the rocks decay,
Weighed down with years the hills dissolve away.
A certain space to yonder Moon is given,
She rises, smiles, and then is lost in Heaven.
Ocean in sullen murmurs ebbs and flows,
But thy bright beam unchanged for ever glows!
When Earth is darkened with tempestuous skies,
When Thunder shakes the sphere and Lightning flies,
Thy face, O Sun, no rolling blasts deform,
Thou look’st from clouds and laughest at the Storm.
To Ossian, Orb of Light! thou look’st in vain,
Nor cans’t thou glad his agèd eyes again,
Whether thy locks in Orient Beauty stream,
Or glimmer through the West with fainter gleam—
But thou, perhaps, like me with age must bend;
Thy season o’er, thy days will find their end,
No more yon azure vault with rays adorn,
Lull’d in the clouds, nor hear the voice of Morn.
Exult, O Sun, in all thy youthful strength!
Age, dark unlovely Age, appears at length,
As gleams the moonbeam through the broken cloud
While mountain vapours spread their misty shroud—
The Northern tempest howls along at last,
And wayworn strangers shrink amid the blast.
Thou rolling Sun who gild’st those rising towers,
Fair didst thou shine upon my earlier hours!
I hail’d with smiles the cheering rays of Morn,
My breast by no tumultuous Passion torn—
Now hateful are thy beams which wake no more
The sense of joy which thrill’d my breast before;
Welcome thou cloudy veil of nightly skies,
To thy bright canopy the mourner flies:
Once bright, thy Silence lull’d my frame to rest,
And Sleep my soul with gentle visions blest;
Now wakeful Grief disdains her mild controul,
Dark is the night, but darker is my Soul.
Ye warring Winds of Heav’n your fury urge,
To me congenial sounds your wintry Dirge:
Swift as your wings my happier days have past,
Keen as your storms is Sorrow’s chilling blast;
To Tempests thus expos’d my Fate has been,
Piercing like yours, like yours, alas! unseen.

— The End —