Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Yue Wang Yitkbel Dec 2019
Introduction:
The Young Poet’s Dreams:

I often dream of the ocean
Dream of the sea
I've been waking up to a longing
Longing for the land
The land of my birth
South of the Clouds
North of the sea
Not bordering either
But close and very near
To the heavens and the world

Overlooked by progress
But not by history
Nature, and life
I was ungrateful of having fallen behind
Though I was still deeply moved
By the primitive nature and land
Still fully alive,
Green as the winding rivers
Firm as its sheltering boulders
This must be a proximity to
The truth I seek
The timelessness I seek


Chorus of Epiphany:


Yes,
There must be Truth
In the unchanged and unchanging
Evergreen, and restlessly flowing
Rituals and rites kept alive
Thousands of years despite
Time, and the forsaken everything

Were the Truth and the eternal
Timeless, and the Faraway
Always so close
To home?


The Eternalist Dream:


Is this the source and origin of
My nightly and whimsical nautical dreams
The fact that I was born near the land
Of ancient and now lost shallow seas

Am I called by the truth, unchanged
In giant columns of limestone
Still marked by waves from near-eon ago
Though we can no longer see them
In Eternalism, the ocean still wavers
As truly as my footprints curved by
The flow of all objects of time and space
As truly as the countless unseeable me
Navigating through life and existence
Bearing all that is forever timeless
Unacknowledged for it is unseen
Through each step taken and each
Subtle yet unmistakable movement
Create a new and continuous ‘to be’
With all of me floating along the unseen

Yet
Fully alive and eternal shallow sea


Chorus of Epiphany:


Yes,
There must be Truth
In the unchanged and unchanging
Evergreen, and restlessly flowing
Rituals and rites kept alive
Thousands of years despite
Time, and the forsaken everything

Were the Truth and the eternal
Timeless, and the Faraway
Always so close
To home?


The Mythical Dream:


It lives on in familiar words and songs
And not just silently carved in stones
To be felt by the more sentient and aware
And ignored by those occupied by more
Present and timely tangible indulgences
Guided by the elders' tales and melodies
The distant dream of purer lives and love
Manifests in this child's untamed heart
Yet searching for a world different to
This mundane and subdued reality
Each stone shadowed with the spirit
Suggestive of a more petrified golem
Granted by even a hint of heads and torsos
Were given a name from myths not stranger
To a young soul lured by the allure of fables
And so an Eastern Stone metamorphosis
Of the Yi Legend of Ashima who turned into
The famed stone still standing proudly
Among the stone forest after being forbidden
A loyal union with her most unbetraying love
Burst into life full of every sung voice and color
Leading the way for the lithic pilgrimage
Of the mythical monk of the "Journey to the West"
They too live on unchanged and unchanging
Through every weathered stone yet standing

Through every named word kept repeating
Through every ancient myth ever recalling
Kept alive and from disappearing
In every child’s
Dreams


Chorus of Epiphany:


Yes,
There must be Truth
In the unchanged and unchanging
Evergreen, and restlessly flowing
Rituals and rites kept alive
Thousands of years despite
Time, and the forsaken everything

Were the Truth and the eternal
Timeless, and the Faraway
Always so close
To home?


The Human Dream:


Ancient tongues often remain unwritten
And even those like the pictographic Dongba
Though befriending my childlike curiosity
Still remain stranger to my understanding
So only vaguely am I acquainted with
The varied rites, rituals, celebrations
Of the people keeping alive the unchanged
Words, traditions, dresses, and mythology
Ever one with nature, the elements, universal
Some dance in the darkness with torches
Others duel playfully with water under tropic sun
Like my childhood dreams of a too optimistic world
Their dresses and symbols, from ox to peacocks
Remain ever hopeful, and full of living colors
Truly, what comprehension do I really need?
When the earth’s heart beats in unison with
Their thundering dance sung with bare feet
When they hand you horns of sweet rice wine
Inviting you to a far more intoxicating dream
You only need to understand and accept
What you can evidently feel and surely see
The unchanging and unchangeable joy
So pure and kind, that will forever,
Perhaps thankfully overlooked by progress,
Timelessly remain.


Chorus of Epiphany:


Yes,
There must be Truth
In the unchanged and unchanging
Evergreen, and restlessly flowing
Rituals and rites kept alive
Thousands of years despite
Time, and the forsaken everything

Were the Truth and the eternal
Timeless, and the Faraway
Always so close
To home?


Conclusion:


It must be,
For in my nautical
Waking and asleep
Eternalist, Mythic, Human Dreams

It calls restlessly to me
From my birth, through its continuation
I’ve risen and gazed upon the violently
Violet obscure and cloudy night sky
And felt a great fear crushing down
Upon this child of an ever searching soul

I was afraid,
I will never KNOW
And know what,
I did not know

I have felt something stirring
Yet, all greatness seemed
Unreachable, unseeable
Undreamable like the hidden stars

I loved the winding rivers between earthen boulders
I loved the rainforest sacred as its wild elephants
I love the stalagmites caves and the dormant volcanoes

Yet, always longing for an unfamiliar faraway
More moved by progress and not overlooked
I was never aware, until now
The truth timeless and unchanging
Though now slow uncovering
That was always
At
HOME
The Timeless Dream of Home
By: Yue Xing Yitkbel ****
Sunday, November 24, 2019
5:53 PM
False Poets Oct 2017
does the moon get tired?

~for the children who never tire of moon gazing upon the dock,
by the light of the fireflies,
till the angels are dispatched by Nana,
to sprinkle sleepy dust in their eyelashes so long and fine~


<•>
while walking the dog I no longer have,
a happenstance glanceable up over the River East,
there you were, mr. moon, in all your fulsomeness ,
surrounded by a potpourri of courtier clouds,
all deferentially bowing, waving,
passing past you at a demure royal speed on their way
perhaps,
to Rebecca's northern London,
of was it south to grace of  v V v's Texas^,
in any event,
the cloudy ladies, all bustling and curvaceous,  
all high stepping in recognition of your exalted place,
Master of the Night Sky

We,
the word careless, poets excessive,
sometimes called silly poppies, old men,
left footed, still crazy after many years,
most assuredly poets false all of us,
without a proper prior organized thought train,
outed,
bludgeon blurted,
an inquiry preposterous and strange,
strait directed to the sombre face,
to mister moon himself!

tell me moon, do you ever tire?*

the obeisant clouds shocked
as that face we all uniform know,
unchanged anywhere you might go  to gaze, be looking upon it,
watched the moon's face turn askew.

He looking down at our rude puzzlement,
with a Most Parisian askance,
a look of French ahem moustacheoed disbelief,
while we watched as the moon cherubic cheeks
filled with airy atmosphere,
then he sighed

so windy winding, was it,
so mountain high and river deep,
that those chubby clouds were blown off course,
from a starless NYC sky
all the way past Victoria Station,
only to stop at Pradip and Bala's
mysterious land of
bolly-dancing India,
on their way to Sally's Bay of Manila,
magic places all!

Mr. Moon looked down at this one tremulous fool representative  
(me) and in a voice
basso beaming and starry sonorous,
befitting its stellar positioning,
squinting to get a closer look at the
who in whom
dare address him in such an emboldened manner!

Mmmmm, recognize you, you are among those
who use my presence, steal my lighted beams, my silver aura,
my supermoon powered light, borrow my eclipses,
reveal my changeling shaped mystery without permission,
only mine to give, you tiny borrowers who write that thing,
p o e t r y

head and kneed, bowed and bent,
I confessed
(on y'alls behalf)

we take your luminosity and don't spare you
even a tuppence, a lonely rupee, no royalties paid
to you-up-so-highness,
and we hereby apologize for all the poets
without exception,
especially those moon besotted,
only love poem writing,
vraiment misbegotten scoundrels....

with another sigh equality powerful,
mr moon pushed those clouds across the Pacifica,
all the way to the  US's West Coast,
up to Colorado,
where moon-takings from the lake's reflecting light
so perfect for rhyming, kayaking,
and moonlight overthrowing,
once more, the moon taken and begotten,
nightly,
as heaven- freely-granted

yes, I tire
and though  here I am much beloved,
usually admired though sometimes even blackened cursed,
seen in every school child's drawing,
in Nasa's calculations,
of my influential gravitational pull,
moving human hearts
to love and giving Leonard a musical compositional hint,
and while this admirable devotion is most delighting,
would it upset some vast eternal plan,
if but one of you once asked,
you fiddler scribblers
my prior permission,
even by just, a lowly
mesmerizing evening tide's tenderizing glance?

yes, I tire,
even though my cycles are variable,
my shape shifting unique, my names so at variance
in all your many musical sing-song dialectical languages,
my sway, my tidal currents so powerful a deterrence,
unlike my boring older sunny cousine  who just cannot get over
how hot looking she is,
I,  so more personally interesting,
yet you use me as if I were a fixture,
on and off with
a tug of the chain string,
never failing to appear,
even when feeling pale yellow and orange wan,
and worse,
mocked as an amore pizza pie,
do you ever ask how I am doing?

yes, I tire,
of my constant circuitous route that changes ever so slowly,
but yet, too fast for me to make some nice human acquaintances, especially those young adoring children
who give me their morn pleasurable squeals when they awake and my presence still there,
a shining ghost of a guardianship protector still
watching over them

how oft in life do we presume,
take for granted
grants so extra-ordinary
that we forget to remember
the extra
and see only the ordinary

how oft in life do we assume,
the every day is always every,
until it is not,
only an only
a now and then,
till then,
is no longer a
now*

<>
oh moon, oh moon,
our richest apologies
we hereby tender and surrender,
our arrogance beyond belief,
what can we offer in relief?

silence heard loud and clear,
mr. moon was gone,
a satellite in motion,
so our words burnt up in the atmosphere
unheard

we did not weep
nor huff and puff,
blow those clouds back to us,
for we knew
the extraordinary
would return tomorrow,
we will be ready,
better another day,
to prepare
a lunar composition,
a psalm of hallelujah praise,
for mr. moon
of which
mr moon will never tire,
for filled with the perma-warmth
of our affection
for the one we call mr.moon
False Poets is a collective of different poets who write here, in a single voice,
hence the confusing interchangeable switching of the pronouns.    sorry bout that.


^ HP - give them back the claimed  V name!
Nat Lipstadt Aug 2018
the angel amongst us

~for Alexander, master splasher~

flexibility is important when poetry writing in a warm tub and a long day ahead is scheduled; so willingly accept the autocorrect
for I am both an experienced poet and bath soaker and
believer in wondrous mystery and unexpected fumbles
that lead to to miracle touchdowns

~•~

the two mathematicians examine the angle, measure the degree of difference at intersection and bless it with an identity,
calling it by its name,
perhaps obtuse, perhaps right, perhaps both

two sets of eyes examine the angle,
study its ****** expression

the old man says:
see the angle on the clock formed by the big handle on the twelve and the little hand on the eight?

this is angle of eight o’clock:
time to stop the splashing and start the get-readying
for we have miles to go before the ocean can say hello!

little angel says angle no go
and slashes the water with both
hands to establish the firmness of his views
and change Einstein’s time from present to future

the angle depends on the perspective of the viewer

the old poet comprehends leaving a warm tub is a regretful thing

but he measures the degree of difference at this
intersection
of time and bath and blesses it with an identity

“time to go”

the angle of my angel is now 2 pointed arms, pointed straight up,
at the twelve o'clock,

as he stands up in fevered protest,
my arms sweep his little legs to
a point at eight o’clock,
angel, commenting on his swift flight
disputes the grandfathers physics

"no go now,
now go later^"

though the angle is unchanged
the perspective of time and space
(and traffic),
yet differs

one sees an angle,
the angel sees time
eternally folding in on itself


that is the angle amongst us
^Surprising as it may be to most non-scientists and even to some scientists, Albert Einstein concluded in his later years that the past, present, and future all exist simultaneously. In 1952, in his book Relativity, in discussing Minkowski's Space World interpretation of his theory of relativity, Einstein writes:

Since there exists in this four dimensional structure [space-time] no longer any sections which represent "now" objectively, the concepts of happening and becoming are indeed not completely suspended, but yet complicated. It appears therefore more natural to think of physical reality as a four dimensional existence, instead of, as hitherto, the evolution of a three dimensional existence.
(gulp)

couldn’t resist a minute more.

Relapse

I again…

After six months sober

Here.

in this pain I know all too well.

Ten years lost to this drug, my veins ache for.

First breath in the morning and last thought at night all consumed by it,

Every cell in me craves it.

That physical euphoria my body portraits.

Feels like someone has poured pure joy into every single muscle and fiber of my being.

It makes me feel so content

I am literally in love the entire world.

Every single bit of me is singing and buzzing with life and love.

It’s like the ecstasy of *******. That first, blissful, pleasurable pulsation of endorphin's and serotonin.

Is what I feel when I first take LOVE.

And then,

And then, the honeymoon stage is over.

Fights erupt,

never-ending debates,

miscommunications,

misperceptions,

no trust,

accusations,

lies,

“I’m done”



Again, it feels like a part of my soul is leaving my body.

Again, sitting here numb.

A toxic love

I’m addicted too,

And there’s no way around it.

It’s already deep intertwined with my veins.

Yet no matter the toxic tragic event that happened before, I sit here, and I want nothing more than to spend my life next to this soul.

To see his eyes unchanged as the skin around it wrinkling and old, is what my heart will always desire, to stare at those eyes for the rest of eternity.

Dead air…


















So here I’ll wait, until you decided to come into my life again and repeat this déjà vu.
Kevin J Taylor Oct 2017
Let each hate, and ours for his,
Be scraped away. Hopefully
He cared for some— At least the few
That may have cared for him.

Allow unchanged what good remains.
At length, with love or hate or both,
We go. In time, some with pause
And some without, return.
.
Alexis J Meighan Oct 2012
An X-ray  of ******* love

They were so soft.
The hands that took control and made the pace
Of the heart that race
Within the mess of a chest
That bravado expels

It was so open.
That mind that reduced his fears Induced tears
Used to indulged his idol chatter
Hitting my wordy pitches
Like a home run "Hey Batter Batter!!"

It felt so right
The places that exposed his **** faces
Things that spread, squeezed, and joy in **** tasting
An inserted pleasure burrowed deep from throat to waisted
Passed out drunk on love lust and **** filled vases

The peak was so brilliant
Joy ride till they collide out of control out of their minds
Writing vandalism like an equations broadside
"E=U & I" , could hate you in this day and time
But starve till withered away the day she ever said goodbye

The splash was so divine
Touched by her personal heaven
An angel as lucky like the # 11
He could never pretend or fake being insatiable.
The main source of his complexity

The view was so vast
A world of flat boring land waiting to be filled
Brought to life by their skills and the pursuit of a thrill
Would feel beheaded if ever they stood still
Feeding their frenzy and bending alls will (to their own)

The potency was such a rush
Too much oh so much, but oh so desired
Craving how much she'd  say " it's you I admire"
Toiling with brow to his navel, igniting the fire
The long kiss goodnight, made the morning quench of the sun a joy to the heart like her sweet face and loving
The monument by which praise and parade of her exploited flesh bare the quill to write paradise that he is inspired

The dream is much too real
While they watch the world turn and the masses conform
We struggle against the tide and tread the waves of the pass they morn
A lottery, marathon, playground, where many have entered her but only one can win the title of "Adored"

The now is not so much of then
They were them sometimes Every now and again engaged in moments when
Them they see and believe "you and me can be...."

But time sprints, and they limp, slower every aging step
Till times out of view and they're  out of breath
Bed bound but not the expected intent
For one is most attentive while the other lay mostly spent
But embraced they lay unchanged in any way
Still in love and still insane
Crazy for each others bane
Awake for the moon, and snooze through the rain
Gentle dreams of forbidden entry, daily flirt but never stray
Away, stay, away, plead for a day. Agreed then rinse, repeat
A treat for the sweet thoughts of the "use to be" but enjoyable right here, right now, someday is today

-Xin-
Mikey Jha Nov 2014
I will never understand
Those who choose to walk away from love
And I will never understand
Why love can't always be enough

Every day is still a struggle
As I try to hold my head and walk with grace
Knowing there is only purpose
And nothing about us was a mistake

Even though I have yet to find the lesson under all this pain
There is one thing I know for certain

I am not unchanged

You didn't leave me
The same way that you found me
So if I had to find a silver lining
I suppose I'd say that I became
A better me for loving you
So I know that

I am not unchanged

..I will never understand
Those who choose to walk away from love
And I will never understand
Why love can't always be enough
It is full winter now:  the trees are bare,
Save where the cattle huddle from the cold
Beneath the pine, for it doth never wear
The autumn’s gaudy livery whose gold
Her jealous brother pilfers, but is true
To the green doublet; bitter is the wind, as though it blew

From Saturn’s cave; a few thin wisps of hay
Lie on the sharp black hedges, where the wain
Dragged the sweet pillage of a summer’s day
From the low meadows up the narrow lane;
Upon the half-thawed snow the bleating sheep
Press close against the hurdles, and the shivering house-dogs creep

From the shut stable to the frozen stream
And back again disconsolate, and miss
The bawling shepherds and the noisy team;
And overhead in circling listlessness
The cawing rooks whirl round the frosted stack,
Or crowd the dripping boughs; and in the fen the ice-pools crack

Where the gaunt bittern stalks among the reeds
And ***** his wings, and stretches back his neck,
And hoots to see the moon; across the meads
Limps the poor frightened hare, a little speck;
And a stray seamew with its fretful cry
Flits like a sudden drift of snow against the dull grey sky.

Full winter:  and the ***** goodman brings
His load of ******* from the chilly byre,
And stamps his feet upon the hearth, and flings
The sappy billets on the waning fire,
And laughs to see the sudden lightening scare
His children at their play, and yet,—the spring is in the air;

Already the slim crocus stirs the snow,
And soon yon blanched fields will bloom again
With nodding cowslips for some lad to mow,
For with the first warm kisses of the rain
The winter’s icy sorrow breaks to tears,
And the brown thrushes mate, and with bright eyes the rabbit peers

From the dark warren where the fir-cones lie,
And treads one snowdrop under foot, and runs
Over the mossy knoll, and blackbirds fly
Across our path at evening, and the suns
Stay longer with us; ah! how good to see
Grass-girdled spring in all her joy of laughing greenery

Dance through the hedges till the early rose,
(That sweet repentance of the thorny briar!)
Burst from its sheathed emerald and disclose
The little quivering disk of golden fire
Which the bees know so well, for with it come
Pale boy’s-love, sops-in-wine, and daffadillies all in bloom.

Then up and down the field the sower goes,
While close behind the laughing younker scares
With shrilly whoop the black and thievish crows,
And then the chestnut-tree its glory wears,
And on the grass the creamy blossom falls
In odorous excess, and faint half-whispered madrigals

Steal from the bluebells’ nodding carillons
Each breezy morn, and then white jessamine,
That star of its own heaven, snap-dragons
With lolling crimson tongues, and eglantine
In dusty velvets clad usurp the bed
And woodland empery, and when the lingering rose hath shed

Red leaf by leaf its folded panoply,
And pansies closed their purple-lidded eyes,
Chrysanthemums from gilded argosy
Unload their gaudy scentless merchandise,
And violets getting overbold withdraw
From their shy nooks, and scarlet berries dot the leafless haw.

O happy field! and O thrice happy tree!
Soon will your queen in daisy-flowered smock
And crown of flower-de-luce trip down the lea,
Soon will the lazy shepherds drive their flock
Back to the pasture by the pool, and soon
Through the green leaves will float the hum of murmuring bees at noon.

Soon will the glade be bright with bellamour,
The flower which wantons love, and those sweet nuns
Vale-lilies in their snowy vestiture
Will tell their beaded pearls, and carnations
With mitred dusky leaves will scent the wind,
And straggling traveller’s-joy each hedge with yellow stars will bind.

Dear bride of Nature and most bounteous spring,
That canst give increase to the sweet-breath’d kine,
And to the kid its little horns, and bring
The soft and silky blossoms to the vine,
Where is that old nepenthe which of yore
Man got from poppy root and glossy-berried mandragore!

There was a time when any common bird
Could make me sing in unison, a time
When all the strings of boyish life were stirred
To quick response or more melodious rhyme
By every forest idyll;—do I change?
Or rather doth some evil thing through thy fair pleasaunce range?

Nay, nay, thou art the same:  ’tis I who seek
To vex with sighs thy simple solitude,
And because fruitless tears bedew my cheek
Would have thee weep with me in brotherhood;
Fool! shall each wronged and restless spirit dare
To taint such wine with the salt poison of own despair!

Thou art the same:  ’tis I whose wretched soul
Takes discontent to be its paramour,
And gives its kingdom to the rude control
Of what should be its servitor,—for sure
Wisdom is somewhere, though the stormy sea
Contain it not, and the huge deep answer ‘’Tis not in me.’

To burn with one clear flame, to stand *****
In natural honour, not to bend the knee
In profitless prostrations whose effect
Is by itself condemned, what alchemy
Can teach me this? what herb Medea brewed
Will bring the unexultant peace of essence not subdued?

The minor chord which ends the harmony,
And for its answering brother waits in vain
Sobbing for incompleted melody,
Dies a swan’s death; but I the heir of pain,
A silent Memnon with blank lidless eyes,
Wait for the light and music of those suns which never rise.

The quenched-out torch, the lonely cypress-gloom,
The little dust stored in the narrow urn,
The gentle XAIPE of the Attic tomb,—
Were not these better far than to return
To my old fitful restless malady,
Or spend my days within the voiceless cave of misery?

Nay! for perchance that poppy-crowned god
Is like the watcher by a sick man’s bed
Who talks of sleep but gives it not; his rod
Hath lost its virtue, and, when all is said,
Death is too rude, too obvious a key
To solve one single secret in a life’s philosophy.

And Love! that noble madness, whose august
And inextinguishable might can slay
The soul with honeyed drugs,—alas! I must
From such sweet ruin play the runaway,
Although too constant memory never can
Forget the arched splendour of those brows Olympian

Which for a little season made my youth
So soft a swoon of exquisite indolence
That all the chiding of more prudent Truth
Seemed the thin voice of jealousy,—O hence
Thou huntress deadlier than Artemis!
Go seek some other quarry! for of thy too perilous bliss.

My lips have drunk enough,—no more, no more,—
Though Love himself should turn his gilded prow
Back to the troubled waters of this shore
Where I am wrecked and stranded, even now
The chariot wheels of passion sweep too near,
Hence!  Hence!  I pass unto a life more barren, more austere.

More barren—ay, those arms will never lean
Down through the trellised vines and draw my soul
In sweet reluctance through the tangled green;
Some other head must wear that aureole,
For I am hers who loves not any man
Whose white and stainless ***** bears the sign Gorgonian.

Let Venus go and chuck her dainty page,
And kiss his mouth, and toss his curly hair,
With net and spear and hunting equipage
Let young Adonis to his tryst repair,
But me her fond and subtle-fashioned spell
Delights no more, though I could win her dearest citadel.

Ay, though I were that laughing shepherd boy
Who from Mount Ida saw the little cloud
Pass over Tenedos and lofty Troy
And knew the coming of the Queen, and bowed
In wonder at her feet, not for the sake
Of a new Helen would I bid her hand the apple take.

Then rise supreme Athena argent-limbed!
And, if my lips be musicless, inspire
At least my life:  was not thy glory hymned
By One who gave to thee his sword and lyre
Like AEschylos at well-fought Marathon,
And died to show that Milton’s England still could bear a son!

And yet I cannot tread the Portico
And live without desire, fear and pain,
Or nurture that wise calm which long ago
The grave Athenian master taught to men,
Self-poised, self-centred, and self-comforted,
To watch the world’s vain phantasies go by with unbowed head.

Alas! that serene brow, those eloquent lips,
Those eyes that mirrored all eternity,
Rest in their own Colonos, an eclipse
Hath come on Wisdom, and Mnemosyne
Is childless; in the night which she had made
For lofty secure flight Athena’s owl itself hath strayed.

Nor much with Science do I care to climb,
Although by strange and subtle witchery
She drew the moon from heaven:  the Muse Time
Unrolls her gorgeous-coloured tapestry
To no less eager eyes; often indeed
In the great epic of Polymnia’s scroll I love to read

How Asia sent her myriad hosts to war
Against a little town, and panoplied
In gilded mail with jewelled scimitar,
White-shielded, purple-crested, rode the Mede
Between the waving poplars and the sea
Which men call Artemisium, till he saw Thermopylae

Its steep ravine spanned by a narrow wall,
And on the nearer side a little brood
Of careless lions holding festival!
And stood amazed at such hardihood,
And pitched his tent upon the reedy shore,
And stayed two days to wonder, and then crept at midnight o’er

Some unfrequented height, and coming down
The autumn forests treacherously slew
What Sparta held most dear and was the crown
Of far Eurotas, and passed on, nor knew
How God had staked an evil net for him
In the small bay at Salamis,—and yet, the page grows dim,

Its cadenced Greek delights me not, I feel
With such a goodly time too out of tune
To love it much:  for like the Dial’s wheel
That from its blinded darkness strikes the noon
Yet never sees the sun, so do my eyes
Restlessly follow that which from my cheated vision flies.

O for one grand unselfish simple life
To teach us what is Wisdom! speak ye hills
Of lone Helvellyn, for this note of strife
Shunned your untroubled crags and crystal rills,
Where is that Spirit which living blamelessly
Yet dared to kiss the smitten mouth of his own century!

Speak ye Rydalian laurels! where is he
Whose gentle head ye sheltered, that pure soul
Whose gracious days of uncrowned majesty
Through lowliest conduct touched the lofty goal
Where love and duty mingle!  Him at least
The most high Laws were glad of, he had sat at Wisdom’s feast;

But we are Learning’s changelings, know by rote
The clarion watchword of each Grecian school
And follow none, the flawless sword which smote
The pagan Hydra is an effete tool
Which we ourselves have blunted, what man now
Shall scale the august ancient heights and to old Reverence bow?

One such indeed I saw, but, Ichabod!
Gone is that last dear son of Italy,
Who being man died for the sake of God,
And whose unrisen bones sleep peacefully,
O guard him, guard him well, my Giotto’s tower,
Thou marble lily of the lily town! let not the lour

Of the rude tempest vex his slumber, or
The Arno with its tawny troubled gold
O’er-leap its marge, no mightier conqueror
Clomb the high Capitol in the days of old
When Rome was indeed Rome, for Liberty
Walked like a bride beside him, at which sight pale Mystery

Fled shrieking to her farthest sombrest cell
With an old man who grabbled rusty keys,
Fled shuddering, for that immemorial knell
With which oblivion buries dynasties
Swept like a wounded eagle on the blast,
As to the holy heart of Rome the great triumvir passed.

He knew the holiest heart and heights of Rome,
He drave the base wolf from the lion’s lair,
And now lies dead by that empyreal dome
Which overtops Valdarno hung in air
By Brunelleschi—O Melpomene
Breathe through thy melancholy pipe thy sweetest threnody!

Breathe through the tragic stops such melodies
That Joy’s self may grow jealous, and the Nine
Forget awhile their discreet emperies,
Mourning for him who on Rome’s lordliest shrine
Lit for men’s lives the light of Marathon,
And bare to sun-forgotten fields the fire of the sun!

O guard him, guard him well, my Giotto’s tower!
Let some young Florentine each eventide
Bring coronals of that enchanted flower
Which the dim woods of Vallombrosa hide,
And deck the marble tomb wherein he lies
Whose soul is as some mighty orb unseen of mortal eyes;

Some mighty orb whose cycled wanderings,
Being tempest-driven to the farthest rim
Where Chaos meets Creation and the wings
Of the eternal chanting Cherubim
Are pavilioned on Nothing, passed away
Into a moonless void,—and yet, though he is dust and clay,

He is not dead, the immemorial Fates
Forbid it, and the closing shears refrain.
Lift up your heads ye everlasting gates!
Ye argent clarions, sound a loftier strain
For the vile thing he hated lurks within
Its sombre house, alone with God and memories of sin.

Still what avails it that she sought her cave
That murderous mother of red harlotries?
At Munich on the marble architrave
The Grecian boys die smiling, but the seas
Which wash AEgina fret in loneliness
Not mirroring their beauty; so our lives grow colourless

For lack of our ideals, if one star
Flame torch-like in the heavens the unjust
Swift daylight kills it, and no trump of war
Can wake to passionate voice the silent dust
Which was Mazzini once! rich Niobe
For all her stony sorrows hath her sons; but Italy,

What Easter Day shall make her children rise,
Who were not Gods yet suffered? what sure feet
Shall find their grave-clothes folded? what clear eyes
Shall see them ******?  O it were meet
To roll the stone from off the sepulchre
And kiss the bleeding roses of their wounds, in love of her,

Our Italy! our mother visible!
Most blessed among nations and most sad,
For whose dear sake the young Calabrian fell
That day at Aspromonte and was glad
That in an age when God was bought and sold
One man could die for Liberty! but we, burnt out and cold,

See Honour smitten on the cheek and gyves
Bind the sweet feet of Mercy:  Poverty
Creeps through our sunless lanes and with sharp knives
Cuts the warm throats of children stealthily,
And no word said:- O we are wretched men
Unworthy of our great inheritance! where is the pen

Of austere Milton? where the mighty sword
Which slew its master righteously? the years
Have lost their ancient leader, and no word
Breaks from the voiceless tripod on our ears:
While as a ruined mother in some spasm
Bears a base child and loathes it, so our best enthusiasm

Genders unlawful children, Anarchy
Freedom’s own Judas, the vile prodigal
Licence who steals the gold of Liberty
And yet has nothing, Ignorance the real
One Fraticide since Cain, Envy the asp
That stings itself to anguish, Avarice whose palsied grasp

Is in its extent stiffened, moneyed Greed
For whose dull appetite men waste away
Amid the whirr of wheels and are the seed
Of things which slay their sower, these each day
Sees rife in England, and the gentle feet
Of Beauty tread no more the stones of each unlovely street.

What even Cromwell spared is desecrated
By **** and worm, left to the stormy play
Of wind and beating snow, or renovated
By more destructful hands:  Time’s worst decay
Will wreathe its ruins with some loveliness,
But these new Vandals can but make a rain-proof barrenness.

Where is that Art which bade the Angels sing
Through Lincoln’s lofty choir, till the air
Seems from such marble harmonies to ring
With sweeter song than common lips can dare
To draw from actual reed? ah! where is now
The cunning hand which made the flowering hawthorn branches bow

For Southwell’s arch, and carved the House of One
Who loved the lilies of the field with all
Our dearest English flowers? the same sun
Rises for us:  the seasons natural
Weave the same tapestry of green and grey:
The unchanged hills are with us:  but that Spirit hath passed away.

And yet perchance it may be better so,
For Tyranny is an incestuous Queen,
****** her brother is her bedfellow,
And the Plague chambers with her:  in obscene
And ****** paths her treacherous feet are set;
Better the empty desert and a soul inviolate!

For gentle brotherhood, the harmony
Of living in the healthful air, the swift
Clean beauty of strong limbs when men are free
And women chaste, these are the things which lift
Our souls up more than even Agnolo’s
Gaunt blinded Sibyl poring o’er the scroll of human woes,

Or Titian’s little maiden on the stair
White as her own sweet lily and as tall,
Or Mona Lisa smiling through her hair,—
Ah! somehow life is bigger after all
Than any painted angel, could we see
The God that is within us!  The old Greek serenity

Which curbs the passion of that
Graff1980 Jan 2015
It never ends, fragments of visions collapsing upon themselves painfully. Her swollen eyes opening, and bursting with orange fire. Then closing just as fast. In between those agonizing seconds she sees everything. Thousands of years cycling over and over. Visions of visions within visions.


Cassandra saw her city razed to the ground. The wall which once stood firm against the onslaught of enemies crumbling with the ravages of time. She closed her eyes. When she opened them again she saw her own grief. Her cousin had fallen in battle. She closed her eyes again, and scratched at her itchy eyelids.



Ten weeks passed without a blink, not even a fraction of an opening. She was disciplined, but the longer she fought the more her eyelids would burn. One blink to ease the agony and she was forced to see her father’s skin. A purple mass of dead flesh bubbling swelling, exploding, and rotting, with maggots squirming in out and around till flies formed and flew away. Another corpse left out in a burning city. One among many denied a peaceful death. Buildings crumbled to dust, the bodies became one with the earth. Cassandra cried without opening her eyes. Her father stroked her long soft curls, whispering reassurances. “It’s all right my child.”


Another three or four weeks passed. She had become blinder than Tiresias the blind prophet. Unable to recall if that was a story she had heard, or would hear in the future.  She sobbed spilling each and every sorrow she could. Every tragedy yet to come. Her father smiled gently placing a warm cloth upon her brow. “Shush my child these nightmares will fade soon enough.”


The young girl opened her eyes again. This time a years’ worth of history unfolded. She saw soldiers gathering arms. Battlements born of the Bronze Age burning with righteous rage. Steel blades clanging against bronze shields in preparation for war. Boats fully loaded departed.


She closed her eyes once more. It would be another two months before she opened them. In the meantime she pleaded with her father to leave the city. Day in and day out begging, sobbing, and screaming until she was sent away.


It was becoming harder and harder to keep her eyes closed. There was a burning force aching to escape. She managed five more weeks until she could bare the pain no longer. As her new sisters bathed her pale dry skin with the sweetest scented oils the young girl recited all that she saw and felt.


The first footfalls of the first soldier’s feet to touch the beach. The feel of the sand as it swirled in, out and around the soldier’s sandals. The general howling commands. The green eyes hungry for battle. The faces contorted in controlled rage. All that intensity burning under the once civilized façade. She closed her eyes again.


Cassandra sat silently in exhaustion, as the sisters slowly brushed the knots out of her long brown hair. They brought her a blindfold, which allowed only a small comfort. This time she only managed to resist for two weeks. The vision came upon her with such force that she cried out and collapsed.


Now the city was burning. Citizen screamed as they ran in terror. Brave men rushed forwards to be impaled on the spears of other brave men. Arrows swallowed the moonlight picking at the earth and scavenging for some bare flesh to devour. Blood ran like red rainwater. Streets streamed thin crimson pools diluted by warm summer showers. The stench oh, the stench, it made Cassandra ***** up chunks of soggy bread and half-digested beef mixed with red wine and stomach acid, while she tried to force her eyes to close.


Finally, she closed her eyes again. The sisters tried to sooth her sorrows, to no avail. Within a years’ time the young girl lost the ability to close her eyes. Cassandra eyeballs slowly burnt out until there was nothing left but charcoaled eye sockets. By the next year she could no longer speak. Cassandra became paralyzed by the futility of her existence.


In her mind the war had come and gone. The sieges were no longer an issue. She no longer felt the urge to cry for the dead. What was, will be, and what will be cannot be undone. What cannot be undone has already happened. Apollo had cursed her. Her beauty had enraptured him, her wit had charmed him, but her will had enraged him.


She was only thirteen with brown eyes and long hair of rare quality, soul so powerful that almost anyone who met her could feel its energy. She shamed the gods with her purity, and unwillingly ensnared their affection.


At first Apollo came with strong arms and tender words. Wooing to the point of painful pleasure. Her eyes could not handle such radiance. His skin burned as his chariot burned. Hair golden flames, skin solar yellow, eye orange as the sun. Each kiss burnt like the worse fever, taking her against her will, savaging her sanity. As if, as if being a god gave him the right to take such liberties.


Apollo viewed her early rejections with whimsy, believing them to be some cute token of her modesty. A god can afford to wait, after all eternity was on his side. After the first hundred no’s his affection gave way to anger. Until his desire could not bear rejection any longer.


At last he cried out to Cassandra. “I will have you or else.”


With a firm but fiery hand he swept her up.  Forcing his mouth against hers. Parting her pursed lip with his powerful tongue.  He shoved his tongue into her mouth, until tears streamed down her cheeks. She could not resist with words, because her mouth was occupied, so she took the only action she knew available to her.


She bit down as hard she could. Lava spewed from Apollo’s lips, roughly singing the inside of her mouth. Without realizing what was happening she swallowed. Her skin began to glow, tiny childlike limbs lengthened and tightened. From her eyes radiated the most powerful light ever seen by man or god. For a moment Apollo cowered beneath the awe of her power, stumbling backwards to the ground dumbfounded.


Regaining his composure he slapped her aside. Scowling in rage “How dare you. You. You worthless *****.”


Her lips parted now of her own volition. Her voice raged with a deep and powerful resonance. “How dare you, you whimpering fool.” The power still flowing inwards filled her with confidence. “I see you for what you are. A tool, a man made invention.” The radiance of her skin was slowly fading. “I see too much now.” She cried out in an ******* fury. A smile crossed her lips. “I see what will become of you and your ilk.”


With strength previously unimagined the young girl thrusted her small hands out throttling Apollo’s throat. He trembled in fear. “You cannot hope to contain the power of me. I am generations incarnated. Passing power from one age to the next. I will not be enslaved.” Her skin began to blink, her voice loss much of its force. “I am Cassandra, and you a merely a passing phase. I will tell the world of all I have seen.”


The last bit of godly energy faded from her skin. Cassandra collapsed. “I still see it all, and you will never touch me again.”


Apollo brushed bits of earth off his person. “See all you want, I care not.” He lunged for her. A flash of thin white light flung him back.

Confused, Apollo rose. Glaring he screamed “You may see all now. It is a gift my blood has given you, but soon it will become a curse. For no mortal wishes to believe that the fates have already written their story. They will ignore you, and in doing so you will find that this power you have gained will be for naught. Thus will be your curse to see all, with no power to stop it.”


Cassandra’s eyes opened wide, seconds split into eternity. She felt the passing of all those around her. She felts time’s stench and rot all around her. Her skin would wrinkle to a certain degree but she would be eternal. She saw cities rise and fall. Some to rise again others to be forgotten. She saw herself seeing each of these visions again and again. She lived her immortal life over and over, events unchanged be anything she said.


The only real comfort was that she saw Apollo wither away. As the old gods fell to ruins weakened by the rationality of new gods, then the rationality of structured reason. Then came the rise of something new and better. Reason with abstraction, abstraction with order, a cycle of energy which emboldened and empowered man. She chuckled.
“Go away little godling.”
And like the little thing he was, Apollo ran.
Her father shushed her, wiping the tears from her face.
The sisters bathed her; singing songs of love and adoration.
Troy fell under the onslaught.
Apollo came and went again.


Cassandra’s eyes opened wide closed and open wide once more, seconds split into eternity. She felt the passing of all those around her. She felts time’s stench and rot all around her. Her skin would wrinkle to a certain degree but she would be eternal. She saw cities rise and fall. Some to rise again others to be forgotten. She saw herself seeing each of these visions again and again. She lived her immortal life over and over, events unchanged be anything she said.


The only one real comfort was that she saw Apollo wither away. As the old gods fell to ruins weakened by the rationality of new gods, then the rationality of structured reason. Then came the rise of something new and better. Reason with abstraction, abstraction with order, a cycle of energy which emboldened and empowered man. She chuckled.
“Go away little godling.”
And like the little thing he was, Apollo ran.
Her father shushed her, wiping the tears from her face.
The sisters bathed her; singing songs of love and adoration.
Troy fell under the onslaught.
Apollo came and went again.
Sometimes I wonder if it's even worth fixing,
The clock on my desk has been broken for too long now.
The hands have not move, have not touch.
But time hasn't stop,
And every now and then a second laughs at my clock,
A minute brushes its side,
An hour smiles at the stillness.
Years have passed and my clock has remained unchanged, unrepaired.
It is frozen in a moment of time,
Still in a bundle of memories,
Trapped in the infinity of the universe.
I wonder if it's even worth fixing a brokenness that makes you feel infinite.
I wonder if a life that could end is worth more than a death that persists.
Mymai Yuan Sep 2010
It’s been a decade and a half that I haven’t returned back to my little home in that far away magical place. Fifteen years- exploring and travelling through the world. It was always my dream, ever since I was a young boy. Living this life is lonely. No one ever belongs to me, nor do I ever belong to anyone. Seeing a million things is marvelous, but it could be twice as marvelous with a companion to express the feelings over instead of my usual, battered black log book that never talked back but was filled with entries from all over the world. One day, I’ll publish it.

I guess the fact that I was always alone was the reason why the little home and my little mother that I use to take for granted became more and more part of me as I stayed away. The land, the gently curving hills and glassy lake grew clearer and clearer in my mind until sometimes, it was all I could see when I shut my eyes at night after a long day of work. Sometimes I would smell the soap on mothers’ skin acutely and played her voice in my head like a radio.
A blur of bright brown eyes.

I’ve been to almost every country in this world: Japan, France, America, Denmark, China and all the different continents… almost a hundred different countries. Each country held such a different (but slightly similar if they were in the same continent) flavor in the air and never failed to teach me one new thing. They all held such distinct character. Beholding the stunning sights and noticing the heart-wrenching small details of a new place was my passion. It captivated me, but the calm, steady love of my heart remained still.
Nothing touched me like the memory of home and my mother. Not the women who flickered through the chapter of my life, appearing in explosions of lust and never meaning more than ***, though some begged me to stay. My loneliness would sway my path of thinking for a short one or two week before I realized it wasn’t what I truly wanted.  
My lovers reminded me of cookie crumbs fallen from my mouth down onto my shirt- there for a brief, brief moment- sometimes picked up to nibble on or brushed away and forgotten.

Oh Love; Love never found me. Perhaps all the travel I did made it harder for Her to find me. I was never at a place for long. Perhaps She, Love, grew tired of trying to catch up with me as I crossed the seas and vast lands. Maybe She got lost one day in an Indian market with the exotic, fat fruits and glittering bangles- fading off into the air with the aroma of powerfully rich local dishes.
Or maybe I travelled away from Her, and She got left behind.

2 a.m.- On a train: the train is brand new and the metal is still yet glossy and innocent from hard rains, thick snow or fiery heat as the Southern part of my homeland is so prone to. The window is surprisingly see-through, unlike all the muddy windows covered in dust, grime, bird droppings and smashed insects (especially squished mosquitoes) I have looked out of in the past fifteen years. I think I’ll read a few chapters of that book about Cambodian culture to distract my impatient mind: sitting on this cold train that will take me home is all I can possibly think about. Hurry, you ******* train, hurry!
There is something about a train that calms me down and makes me feel all starry-eyed. It is the memory of the only girl I ever loved. A little girl I grew up with. Such thick dark brown hair, big round bright chocolate eyes and the loudest, most obnoxiously boyish laugh I have ever heard from a girl. Hmm, I recalled the small rounded chest and bottom.
We lived so far deep in the country side and one day, on an overnight school trip, the school we attended at took all hundred students on a trip to see the city for just a day. Flashes of her eating a creamy white ice cream sprinkled with tiny candies of the rainbow and standing in awe of the huge library made me smile to myself.
How when everyone was tired that night back on the train, even the teachers exhausted after an early morning and keeping a hundred thirteen-year-olds under control for a whole day, fell asleep. My eyelids were just drooping when she appeared- I smelled her first, sweet like honey with a tinge of something sour like orange or lemon peels. My senses have always been sensitive- especially sight and smell. She carefully peeled back the curtains around the bed, crept into my bunk and cuddled with me, curling her tough plump legs.
My mind flew in many wild ways- for as I said, my senses were sensitive and the curiosity and thrill of an inexperienced young boy did not help to make them any paler- and try as I might to quiet the thoughts, they leapt at her every movement.
I suppose it was her way of telling me she had fallen in love with me. Her cold monkey-feet pressed against me and whispering the night away: her tousled head as she kept sitting up to look out the window on the side to look at the stars. I sat up with her and held her against my chest. I remember wondering how my heart wasn’t bursting from the enormous love I felt for this creature in my lap, watching the dark silhouettes of trees rushing by and the black swaying fingers of rice patties illuminated by needle-point stars and a full, silver moon. The beautiful creature turned around, placed her icy finger tips on my hot neck, and gave a little sigh of relief before leaning in and kissing me.

My skin was covered in goose bumps.

Oranges are my favorite fruit.
I left her, my little home and mother at nineteen. The darling was mine till then. I wrote to her, but when she got around to replying I had already moved. And there my love became my once-loved.
The heart ache didn’t last too long. There was too much to see, I was young and full of cravings and impossible to satisfy hunger despite the countless number of women. I lived in the moment, the fiery moment of passion and life, and the memory of her were blown to wisps.
A ray of pink sunlight broke me from my thoughts and as I rushed back from the past to its future, I wondered in a haze whether she had married or not.

Five a.m. – the sun was up. The sky had streaks of dark blue, so dark it was almost black. A ****** red of a newly-cut wound ran through the sky, arm in arm with royal purple and a pink the color of a child’s lips.

Six a.m. - twenty-two or so students milled into the train chattering. The younger ones have neatly combed hair, slicked down with mousse and parted so aggressively the comb lines are visible cutting the hair in hard chunks with a paper-white hairline slicing through the scalp. The smallest one would be around thirteen and the oldest at eighteen. The oldest-looking one is very pretty with slanted gray eyes and chestnut hair- very matured for her age. A puff of powder to conceal any imperfection of her skin, and the first two buttons on her school blouse unbuttoned to hint at a cleavage of well-developed large *******. Her gaze darts over me frequently. She looks like a lover I had in Holland. I give her a small smile and she returns it, batting her lids to reveal matted dark lashes and shimmery pale blue eyelids like the wings of a butterfly. No child, only if I was much, much younger and had just left home as you will so soon.
A stench of too much perfume emits from the girl beside her. So much that I am momentarily diverted and glance up at her from my log book. I will be relieved when they leave. If there’s one thing I find extremely unattractive in a woman is an overload of perfume- it becomes a stench that is a reminder of gaudy prostitutes.

Six-thirty a.m. -  The train jolts to yet another stop and they clatter out but not before I heard the words, “That man on the train near us was rather handsome, wasn’t he?” I cannot help but chuckle.

Seven a.m. – the train has stopped at least five more stations. This is going to be a long trip. Rummaging in my packed bag for a pair of dark sunglasses I push them on, waiting for the fact that I haven’t slept all two weeks in excitement (and travelling at the speed of light half way around the world at the same time) to kick in and hit me unconscious with sleep.

Two p.m. - the dark glasses cannot block the glaring sunlight of the sunshiny afternoon. We have almost finished passing the city. The rows of buildings, large houses, one-story apartments are narrowing and shrinking in size. I know the railroad tracks have remained unchanged in destination and twenty-so years ago I took this exact same ride but everywhere is unrecognizable.  
I check my wristwatch once again even though I know the time: around nine more hours to go before it reaches the very end possible station and I take the long walk back to my little home.

Six p.m. - I talk amiably to passengers on the train. It is beautiful to hear my home dialect again. The words I speak have grown quite clumsy and my accent is rough. No matter, in two weeks time I’ll be fluent and chirping along with the same fluid accent as the old man beside me is.

Eleven-thirty p.m. – I am all alone on the train. The old man just got off at the station before. He shared a portion of his sandwich with me and a swig of beer from his water bottle (naughty old man), seeing as in my anticipation I forgot to buy any food for the day. A very interesting old man who was delighted to know I travelled just as he use to in his earlier days- quote to remember from him: “Too many people go on about this ******* of a ‘fixed’ home: Home isn’t where you live, son, it’s where they understand you. I’m telling you, that’s something so special in this crazy world.”
It is horrible to be sitting here alone counting down the minutes without a distraction but after all, it is near the last of stations and no one ever comes here anyways. There’s nothing here that could attract visitors. If I were a traveler nothing about this place would excite me very much. Yet for this first time in fifteen years, I’m not an outsider and this land promises me much. My hand shakes from fatigue- but mostly from eagerness. Little home, darling little home, I am coming!
It is a chilly, chilly winter night. My breath pants out in short white puffs. I wrap my scarf more securely around my neck, capturing the warmth as I step out from the warm train into the cold air outside. I can barely notice my environment on the way home except the path has remained unchanged. It is as if I am travelling back into time itself. After a while, the coldness turning the tip of my ears and nose pink is forgotten. All I know is each step is taking me closer and closer to home.

I finally see it. The small little house with a small brown door standing quietly alone next to other identical houses comes into my view. The little homes are clustered on the edge of a river bank, surrounding by dark green trees. The crisp rustling of the leaves in the winter breeze brings a melancholy happiness so great it makes my chest throb. I cup a tiny bit of snow from the ground in my mitten and taste it: oh the same sharp iciness on my tongue.

I wonder if she still lives in that one with the indented steps, the stairs worn out by the thundering saunter of her and her five brothers. They still haven’t bought a new flight of stairs?

The river’s surface is smooth and serene, its surface looking like molten silver rippling in the slight breeze. I remembered in the summer when we, the children, danced; splashing in the water and the elders watched lovingly.

Mother’s carefully watching eyes on me as I swam to and fro, my laughter mingling with everyone else’s. She was especially careful after that near-fateful day when I was six and foolishly went swimming in August without telling mother as she made us her special clear chicken broth. I had inhaled gallons of water before she fished me out, both of us soaking and sobbing. How wonderful it was to hold onto something warm and solid: something breathing, full of life, and I clutched onto her and she clutched onto me and my life.
Up the wooden steps… how surprised mother will be. The ghosts of memories come running to me, pounding their way towards me to greet me first as I open the wooden door with the key slung around my neck as always: mother with her hair curled in soft mocha *****, mother making an ice lollipop in the hot summers in her flower-printed summer dresses, mother swishing around the house cleaning in her blue apron, the hot fire with hot chocolate as we told stories, all the different cats we had purring in a soothing melody… Amalie and her laughing figure spread over the sofa chattering away, Amalie’s quick, hidden kisses in the corners when mother was out of the room or pretending not to look, Amalie’s long hands creeping towards mine… Amalie and mother gossiping together and mother declaring Amalie was the daughter she never had and mother eyeing me knowingly, expecting me to settle my ways and marry Amalie…

Oh little home, I am back, I am home.

I shall go lie on my feathery bed and in the morning I’ll wake up and have no idea where I am before the thought comes back to me that this morning- no, I am not somewhere around half the world away- but in my little hometown.
As sure as the sun will rise, Mother will wake up at her usual eight o’clock and I’ll be downstairs in our sunny-tiled kitchen making a bowl of porridge for her and me.
After her tears and hugs, we’ll sit down by the fire with hot chocolate despite it being early morning and the skies aren’t yet jet-black. I see in my mind’s eyes her dark eyes huge as I unravel my colorful carpet of stories and treasure box of tokens from all around the world.
Maybe after that I’ll ask her whatever became of Amalie…
I hear the tread of footsteps on the stair case. They are heavy sounds. Has mother gained much weight in her old age? She was always a lithe little woman when I was here.
A burly shape appears in the shadows.
For one ******* blindingly stupid moment I think it is mother much fattened in a fluffy night gown, her hair curled up in soft ***** yet again. Perhaps I saw what I wanted to believe despite my senses and instinct suddenly prickling up in one jolt through the spine.
And the shape emerges holding a bat and the outlines gains focus to become a bear-like man with dark brows furrowed and a mass of curls. He starts yelling at me and slashing his bat dangerously.
I raise my arms up in defense and the world swirls around me. From far away I hear my voice shaking in fear and fury, “Where is my mother!” I yell her name and I yell my name to let her know I am here. I am insane with fear for the safety of my mother. No, it cannot be that I come home on the day a demon decides to rob the house of a frail gentle angel. If he has killed her, I will- “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO HER?!”
“What?” he asks in a tone quiet from extreme bewilderment, his grip on the bat loosens and I am quick to see this and take advantage of it.
With an explosion of violent swears I leap onto him to throttle him to death. “MOTHER?! MOTHER! WHAT HAVE YOU ******* DONE TO MY MOTHER?! I’M GOING TO ******* **** YOU, YOU *******!”
A fast pattering of feet sound down the stairs and my mind registers them to be female before I am wrenched of the man and we are separated. I am about to clutch this woman safe from the hulking beast before I notice the skin on the hands pushing my panting chest away from killing the beast are too young to be mothers’. Her hair is a dark mahogany brown, not mild coffee like mothers’.
I stare at her, silent in shock. All the fight drains out of me.
Those eyes that were once so chocolate-brown and bright have lost their sparkle in her tiredness and appear almost… dull as she turns to me.
She says my name three times before I can reply. “Sit down here.”
It is strange that she has ordered me to sit down on my own sofa in my living room. Her frosty hands guide me. “Amalie… where is mother?” I manage to stutter, all the time keeping an eye on the monster of a man.
“Listen to me” she took a few shuddering breaths, “I’m sorry to tell you this way, I wished I could’ve told you any other way but this… your mother is dead. She died five years ago.”
She watched me with an exhausted expression, “In her will she left this house to you and me because she assumed one day-” she shot a cautious glance at the man who towered in the shadows next to her, nursing
To the discontented dreams walking through the dismal decadence of a generation’s misplaced sincerity, along the corners of empty markets and abandoned townhouses and drug-infested parks and housing projects, the blanket of eternity warms the contemporary chills of sadness along a stranger’s spine,
To the soulful singers and the tired poets, the dreamers, idealists, and the hobos whose dust clings to the ghost engines of locomotives of Southern melancholia, along the thickets of thorns coated with the blood of the Negroes and their unchanged magic and blood soaked karma, the America we know must confront such chilling histories,
To the woeful songs of the youth, spilling across the timeless waves of devolution and unspoiled shores of lost memory, the melodies churn with thunder within the basin of toxic sewage and the lifeless poets dare to dream the dream no man can find satisfying,
To the sun and the moon, the two entities in the sky passing by the horror all eyes wish to pierce with flame and melt the plastic Hollywood images of our time, with the serrated edge of a knife’s blade flickering like a silver jewel in the moonlight, where Hamlet’s laughter stimulates the rhythm of consciousness like the quickened excitement of a perfected sonnet to the empty epiphany brain of our reckless care,
To the mothers who long to smother their little boys and girls with the cradle palm and the warm breast, for her eyes weep at the chaos with folded arms and crooked necks, and to gaze at the unemployment lines are to follow the coiled stems of the snakes and the thieves, the politicians and their two-faced theories,
To the father’s who have lost their fathers to chance or depravity, to the neglected sons whose hearts must pump concrete with panic, their soccer ***** and toy guns have yet to be touched by the jolt of masculinity as the father climbs his mountain of abandonment and carelessly invokes the same demons that destroyed his father,
To the lonesome drunkards, the  feverish crack dealers, the dismal ****-heads, and the 9 to 5 dead end workers, I shall greet them with a glass of enlightenment and reason, but their skin is far too thick to be punctured with the spike that shimmers on Liberty’s head,
To my generation of apathy, how unchanged the afterlife must be, for you know nothing of oblivion but you know everything about the technologically advanced systems of dishonesty, you utilize such things to mask your insecurities and dismal glares and vacant grins and fake smiles, but we pray for you in Time magazine and the newspapers hate both of us,
To the madness in every age, that horrid illness that touches the infant and the elder, that rapes the ****** and the *****, and pushes time and stops it, we have crawled far into the prison cell to escape the shadows that are our shadows,
To the innocence splattered on the sidewalk, the blood flows imagination twisted, images of the worse kind, marketed and packaged by the hands of those who work mindlessly in the factories of tyranny, who have wept at the clock longer than the clock has wept at them,
Who have played the guitar with ****** fingertips and poured truckloads of sweat into their musical dreams as the mirrors on the walls reflected a howling skeleton beyond the gates of Eden, who have slept with friends and a friend of a friend as the world turned them against each other by a simple twist of time,
Who have challenged the social order with a gesture or a pen or a bullet as the world broke out against the police and the Pagan feasts, those ragged Bleeker Street dwellers that mopped the Village with ****** hands and hopeful poetry, Simon and Garfunkel’s Sparrow died because of them, those misguided souls that turn their face from the *** who remind them of themselves more than their own reflection, bones, and mistakes,
Whose false impression we are admiring on the vacant walls of impossibility, where the nurturer and the wicked step-mother run circles around the fiction of truth and the books you shall never read but read anyway,
Who have walked the road no one else would walk, but crawled as they talked and walked as they barked beneath the haunted turns of memory wooded wandering, therein lies the hollowed caverns of abyss, the holes within you that turn out to be true, truer and finer than anything you could do,
Who have fought in the wars called upon by the unbearable static currents, those who have lost ears, eyes, fingers, and legs, the wheelchair bound poet in his muted expression, the condemned man and the electric chair, to the barber, teacher, priest, judge and his wife,
To the children at school and the dancing childless fool, who have witnessed death passing by, the lovers and isolated writers, even the aunt and uncles who sigh, we watch, we eat, we challenge what we greet, and the nameless shall remain nameless through the obscured faces of the shameless,
Undertakers reveal their hidden identities as the wealthy man’s child wanders in confusion, to the traveling blues men who have sold the man in the long black coat more than a few songs and strained strings of struggling strumming sorrow,
Painless pandemonium within the pipe-dreaming poets, who have watched houses burn in haunted hapless hoping, but the Nun knows not to place her loyalty with the **** and the sinful nature of our universe,
To the weakened hearts and the heavy souls, to the oversaturated handkerchiefs and the pain very few shall ever know, who have promised the great promise on a lonesome night and waited up for the end of the world as the world ended them,
Who have waited for assurance on the front of the daily newspapers, it is the soundlessness of ignorance that writes all these papers, and the ink reads black, glazed, political, right, left, middle, left, right,
To the editors in chief and the homeless firetrap, to the wrinkled feet caught on nails  throughout America’s chest, the dreamers have dreamed and you shall all wake, to the findings of truth on every corner, to epiphany’s immortal idealized intelligence, the poetry written on dead-end walls and the forgetful shall remember what was lost,
This intoxicating fume of poetry caught, the flame of predication, and all that assuming has deeply wrought.
Jamie Lee Jan 2018
She sits in her room,
upon her empty bed.
She cries to the moon,
as pain fills her head.

It's the same old question,
the unanswered why.
It never seemed to matter,
how hard she would try.

She thought she had found,
some guidance to the light,
Yet she is alone in the dark,
on this bitter cold night.

How does she conquer,
her ways of surviving?
With hopes of change,
positively surprising?

How does she achieve,
such a dream like this?
How can she change,
feeling meaningless?

Her thoughts are empty,
in her moments of pain.
She doesn't understand,
this lifetime of a game.
Descend from Heaven, Urania, by that name
If rightly thou art called, whose voice divine
Following, above the Olympian hill I soar,
Above the flight of Pegasean wing!
The meaning, not the name, I call: for thou
Nor of the Muses nine, nor on the top
Of old Olympus dwellest; but, heavenly-born,
Before the hills appeared, or fountain flowed,
Thou with eternal Wisdom didst converse,
Wisdom thy sister, and with her didst play
In presence of the Almighty Father, pleased
With thy celestial song.  Up led by thee
Into the Heaven of Heavens I have presumed,
An earthly guest, and drawn empyreal air,
Thy tempering: with like safety guided down
Return me to my native element:
Lest from this flying steed unreined, (as once
Bellerophon, though from a lower clime,)
Dismounted, on the Aleian field I fall,
Erroneous there to wander, and forlorn.
Half yet remains unsung, but narrower bound
Within the visible diurnal sphere;
Standing on earth, not rapt above the pole,
More safe I sing with mortal voice, unchanged
To hoarse or mute, though fallen on evil days,
On evil days though fallen, and evil tongues;
In darkness, and with dangers compassed round,
And solitude; yet not alone, while thou
Visitest my slumbers nightly, or when morn
Purples the east: still govern thou my song,
Urania, and fit audience find, though few.
But drive far off the barbarous dissonance
Of Bacchus and his revellers, the race
Of that wild rout that tore the Thracian bard
In Rhodope, where woods and rocks had ears
To rapture, till the savage clamour drowned
Both harp and voice; nor could the Muse defend
Her son.  So fail not thou, who thee implores:
For thou art heavenly, she an empty dream.
Say, Goddess, what ensued when Raphael,
The affable Arch-Angel, had forewarned
Adam, by dire example, to beware
Apostasy, by what befel in Heaven
To those apostates; lest the like befall
In Paradise to Adam or his race,
Charged not to touch the interdicted tree,
If they transgress, and slight that sole command,
So easily obeyed amid the choice
Of all tastes else to please their appetite,
Though wandering.  He, with his consorted Eve,
The story heard attentive, and was filled
With admiration and deep muse, to hear
Of things so high and strange; things, to their thought
So unimaginable, as hate in Heaven,
And war so near the peace of God in bliss,
With such confusion: but the evil, soon
Driven back, redounded as a flood on those
From whom it sprung; impossible to mix
With blessedness.  Whence Adam soon repealed
The doubts that in his heart arose: and now
Led on, yet sinless, with desire to know
What nearer might concern him, how this world
Of Heaven and Earth conspicuous first began;
When, and whereof created; for what cause;
What within Eden, or without, was done
Before his memory; as one whose drouth
Yet scarce allayed still eyes the current stream,
Whose liquid murmur heard new thirst excites,
Proceeded thus to ask his heavenly guest.
Great things, and full of wonder in our ears,
Far differing from this world, thou hast revealed,
Divine interpreter! by favour sent
Down from the empyrean, to forewarn
Us timely of what might else have been our loss,
Unknown, which human knowledge could not reach;
For which to the infinitely Good we owe
Immortal thanks, and his admonishment
Receive, with solemn purpose to observe
Immutably his sovran will, the end
Of what we are.  But since thou hast vouchsafed
Gently, for our instruction, to impart
Things above earthly thought, which yet concerned
Our knowing, as to highest wisdom seemed,
Deign to descend now lower, and relate
What may no less perhaps avail us known,
How first began this Heaven which we behold
Distant so high, with moving fires adorned
Innumerable; and this which yields or fills
All space, the ambient air wide interfused
Embracing round this floried Earth; what cause
Moved the Creator, in his holy rest
Through all eternity, so late to build
In Chaos; and the work begun, how soon
Absolved; if unforbid thou mayest unfold
What we, not to explore the secrets ask
Of his eternal empire, but the more
To magnify his works, the more we know.
And the great light of day yet wants to run
Much of his race though steep; suspense in Heaven,
Held by thy voice, thy potent voice, he hears,
And longer will delay to hear thee tell
His generation, and the rising birth
Of Nature from the unapparent Deep:
Or if the star of evening and the moon
Haste to thy audience, Night with her will bring,
Silence; and Sleep, listening to thee, will watch;
Or we can bid his absence, till thy song
End, and dismiss thee ere the morning shine.
Thus Adam his illustrious guest besought:
And thus the Godlike Angel answered mild.
This also thy request, with caution asked,
Obtain; though to recount almighty works
What words or tongue of Seraph can suffice,
Or heart of man suffice to comprehend?
Yet what thou canst attain, which best may serve
To glorify the Maker, and infer
Thee also happier, shall not be withheld
Thy hearing; such commission from above
I have received, to answer thy desire
Of knowledge within bounds; beyond, abstain
To ask; nor let thine own inventions hope
Things not revealed, which the invisible King,
Only Omniscient, hath suppressed in night;
To none communicable in Earth or Heaven:
Enough is left besides to search and know.
But knowledge is as food, and needs no less
Her temperance over appetite, to know
In measure what the mind may well contain;
Oppresses else with surfeit, and soon turns
Wisdom to folly, as nourishment to wind.
Know then, that, after Lucifer from Heaven
(So call him, brighter once amidst the host
Of Angels, than that star the stars among,)
Fell with his flaming legions through the deep
Into his place, and the great Son returned
Victorious with his Saints, the Omnipotent
Eternal Father from his throne beheld
Their multitude, and to his Son thus spake.
At least our envious Foe hath failed, who thought
All like himself rebellious, by whose aid
This inaccessible high strength, the seat
Of Deity supreme, us dispossessed,
He trusted to have seised, and into fraud
Drew many, whom their place knows here no more:
Yet far the greater part have kept, I see,
Their station; Heaven, yet populous, retains
Number sufficient to possess her realms
Though wide, and this high temple to frequent
With ministeries due, and solemn rites:
But, lest his heart exalt him in the harm
Already done, to have dispeopled Heaven,
My damage fondly deemed, I can repair
That detriment, if such it be to lose
Self-lost; and in a moment will create
Another world, out of one man a race
Of men innumerable, there to dwell,
Not here; till, by degrees of merit raised,
They open to themselves at length the way
Up hither, under long obedience tried;
And Earth be changed to Heaven, and Heaven to Earth,
One kingdom, joy and union without end.
Mean while inhabit lax, ye Powers of Heaven;
And thou my Word, begotten Son, by thee
This I perform; speak thou, and be it done!
My overshadowing Spirit and Might with thee
I send along; ride forth, and bid the Deep
Within appointed bounds be Heaven and Earth;
Boundless the Deep, because I Am who fill
Infinitude, nor vacuous the space.
Though I, uncircumscribed myself, retire,
And put not forth my goodness, which is free
To act or not, Necessity and Chance
Approach not me, and what I will is Fate.
So spake the Almighty, and to what he spake
His Word, the Filial Godhead, gave effect.
Immediate are the acts of God, more swift
Than time or motion, but to human ears
Cannot without process of speech be told,
So told as earthly notion can receive.
Great triumph and rejoicing was in Heaven,
When such was heard declared the Almighty’s will;
Glory they sung to the Most High, good will
To future men, and in their dwellings peace;
Glory to Him, whose just avenging ire
Had driven out the ungodly from his sight
And the habitations of the just; to Him
Glory and praise, whose wisdom had ordained
Good out of evil to create; instead
Of Spirits malign, a better race to bring
Into their vacant room, and thence diffuse
His good to worlds and ages infinite.
So sang the Hierarchies:  Mean while the Son
On his great expedition now appeared,
Girt with Omnipotence, with radiance crowned
Of Majesty Divine; sapience and love
Immense, and all his Father in him shone.
About his chariot numberless were poured
Cherub, and Seraph, Potentates, and Thrones,
And Virtues, winged Spirits, and chariots winged
From the armoury of God; where stand of old
Myriads, between two brazen mountains lodged
Against a solemn day, harnessed at hand,
Celestial equipage; and now came forth
Spontaneous, for within them Spirit lived,
Attendant on their Lord:  Heaven opened wide
Her ever-during gates, harmonious sound
On golden hinges moving, to let forth
The King of Glory, in his powerful Word
And Spirit, coming to create new worlds.
On heavenly ground they stood; and from the shore
They viewed the vast immeasurable abyss
Outrageous as a sea, dark, wasteful, wild,
Up from the bottom turned by furious winds
And surging waves, as mountains, to assault
Heaven’s highth, and with the center mix the pole.
Silence, ye troubled Waves, and thou Deep, peace,
Said then the Omnifick Word; your discord end!
Nor staid; but, on the wings of Cherubim
Uplifted, in paternal glory rode
Far into Chaos, and the world unborn;
For Chaos heard his voice:  Him all his train
Followed in bright procession, to behold
Creation, and the wonders of his might.
Then staid the fervid wheels, and in his hand
He took the golden compasses, prepared
In God’s eternal store, to circumscribe
This universe, and all created things:
One foot he centered, and the other turned
Round through the vast profundity obscure;
And said, Thus far extend, thus far thy bounds,
This be thy just circumference, O World!
Thus God the Heaven created, thus the Earth,
Matter unformed and void:  Darkness profound
Covered the abyss: but on the watery calm
His brooding wings the Spirit of God outspread,
And vital virtue infused, and vital warmth
Throughout the fluid mass; but downward purged
The black tartareous cold infernal dregs,
Adverse to life: then founded, then conglobed
Like things to like; the rest to several place
Disparted, and between spun out the air;
And Earth self-balanced on her center hung.
Let there be light, said God; and forthwith Light
Ethereal, first of things, quintessence pure,
Sprung from the deep; and from her native east
To journey through the aery gloom began,
Sphered in a radiant cloud, for yet the sun
Was not; she in a cloudy tabernacle
Sojourned the while.  God saw the light was good;
And light from darkness by the hemisphere
Divided: light the Day, and darkness Night,
He named.  Thus was the first day even and morn:
Nor past uncelebrated, nor unsung
By the celestial quires, when orient light
Exhaling first from darkness they beheld;
Birth-day of Heaven and Earth; with joy and shout
The hollow universal orb they filled,
And touched their golden harps, and hymning praised
God and his works; Creator him they sung,
Both when first evening was, and when first morn.
Again, God said,  Let there be firmament
Amid the waters, and let it divide
The waters from the waters; and God made
The firmament, expanse of liquid, pure,
Transparent, elemental air, diffused
In circuit to the uttermost convex
Of this great round; partition firm and sure,
The waters underneath from those above
Dividing: for as earth, so he the world
Built on circumfluous waters calm, in wide
Crystalline ocean, and the loud misrule
Of Chaos far removed; lest fierce extremes
Contiguous might distemper the whole frame:
And Heaven he named the Firmament:  So even
And morning chorus sung the second day.
The Earth was formed, but in the womb as yet
Of waters, embryon immature involved,
Appeared not: over all the face of Earth
Main ocean flowed, not idle; but, with warm
Prolifick humour softening all her globe,
Fermented the great mother to conceive,
Satiate with genial moisture; when God said,
Be gathered now ye waters under Heaven
Into one place, and let dry land appear.
Immediately the mountains huge appear
Emergent, and their broad bare backs upheave
Into the clouds; their tops ascend the sky:
So high as heaved the tumid hills, so low
Down sunk a hollow bottom broad and deep,
Capacious bed of waters:  Thither they
Hasted with glad precipitance, uprolled,
As drops on dust conglobing from the dry:
Part rise in crystal wall, or ridge direct,
For haste; such flight the great command impressed
On the swift floods:  As armies at the call
Of trumpet (for of armies thou hast heard)
Troop to their standard; so the watery throng,
Wave rolling after wave, where way they found,
If steep, with torrent rapture, if through plain,
Soft-ebbing; nor withstood them rock or hill;
But they, or under ground, or circuit wide
With serpent errour wandering, found their way,
And on the washy oose deep channels wore;
Easy, ere God had bid the ground be dry,
All but within those banks, where rivers now
Stream, and perpetual draw their humid train.
The dry land, Earth; and the great receptacle
Of congregated waters, he called Seas:
And saw that it was good; and said, Let the Earth
Put forth the verdant grass, herb yielding seed,
And fruit-tree yielding fruit after her kind,
Whose seed is in herself upon the Earth.
He scarce had said, when the bare Earth, till then
Desart and bare, unsightly, unadorned,
Brought forth the tender grass, whose verdure clad
Her universal face with pleasant green;
Then herbs of every leaf, that sudden flowered
Opening their various colours, and made gay
Her *****, smelling sweet: and, these scarce blown,
Forth flourished thick the clustering vine, forth crept
The swelling gourd, up stood the corny reed
Embattled in her field, and the humble shrub,
And bush with frizzled hair implicit:  Last
Rose, as in dance, the stately trees, and spread
Their branches hung with copious fruit, or gemmed
Their blossoms:  With high woods the hills were crowned;
With tufts the valleys, and each fountain side;
With borders long the rivers: that Earth now
Seemed like to Heaven, a seat where Gods might dwell,
Or wander with delight, and love to haunt
Her sacred shades: though God had yet not rained
Upon the Earth, and man to till the ground
None was; but from the Earth a dewy mist
Went up, and watered all the ground, and each
Plant of the field; which, ere it was in the Earth,
God made, and every herb, before it grew
On the green stem:  God saw that it was good:
So even and morn recorded the third day.
Again the Almighty spake, Let there be lights
High in the expanse of Heaven, to divide
The day from night; and let them be for signs,
For seasons, and for days, and circling years;
And let them be for lights, as I ordain
Their office in the firmament of Heaven,
To give light on the Earth; and it was so.
And God made two great lights, great for their use
To Man, the greater to have rule by day,
The less by night, altern; and made the stars,
And set them in the firmament of Heaven
To illuminate the Earth, and rule the day
In their vicissitude, and rule the night,
And light from darkness to divide.  God saw,
Surveying his great work, that it was good:
For of celestial bodies first the sun
A mighty sphere he framed, unlightsome first,
Though of ethereal mould: then formed the moon
Globose, and every magnitude of stars,
And sowed with stars the Heaven, thick as a field:
Of light by far the greater part he took,
Transplanted from her cloudy shrine, and placed
In the sun’s orb, made porous to receive
And drink the liquid light; firm to retain
Her gathered beams, great palace now of light.
Hither, as to their fountain, other stars
Repairing, in their golden urns draw light,
And hence the morning-planet gilds her horns;
By tincture or reflection they augment
Their small peculiar, though from human sight
So far rem
Donall Dempsey Sep 2018
A WOMAN IS CRYING

In the next room
a woman is crying

a moon
perches upon an hotel sign

unmoved

as a new millennium
dawns

as bright as neon

the woman
still crying

her unknown
despair

shifting silently
from one century to another

human grief
unchanged

from age
to age.

A woman is crying.
Monica Abigail Dec 2012
I knew I would come back to this:
sleepless nights
and empty days,
all missing something
I've been trying to locate for years.
It's 2012 now,
the year of our so-called doom
but I can't help but feel like nothing has changed
from last year
or the year before that
or the one before that
and so on.
Nothing changes anymore.
I feel as if I'm stuck
and everything is being wasted
because we are all just stuck
in this empty stand-still.
When will things start to turn,
start to change,
and bring me somewhere
new?
Colm Istoirm May 2016
This day is like the pouring rain, heavy falling and hard to swallow.
Dark as the memory of an old embrace,
Cold and mellow, like the cousin of a summer day.

Yet within this rain we are unchanged, just not the same.
I see the water as it cascades,
And floods the streets, to wipe the dogged dirt away.

It’s in my ears, it's on my mind, like a booming sigh.
The raindrops on the soggy ground.
Flooded I am washed away, but not far enough to leave this town.
Sometimes storms really creep up on you...
Star Gazer Aug 2016
We're all so captivated by the moment
Letting it slip by as eyes lit up by phones.
We've created sadness and happiness
In rectangles that connects those alone,
Except it's just a different kind of loneliness;
Hit escape, backspace, redefine the definition
Of what it meant to be alone.

We're all connected, we've forgotten
Whether to check or uncheck the connection,
We've lived as circles on a square nothing
More than bits of bytes for an avatar;
Where we witness *** before driving a car,
And we're caught in some lie the world built
That we are so enchanted by thoughts of
"The single ladies are in your area"
So we build blindfolds on what truth the lie beholds
We're all just bits and bytes of data.

So how much more of mankind are we
Where our eyes are glued to a screen
And chatrooms are as far as we've ever been.

We're all striving to be  in the latest social circles
That we redefined circle to mean a locked box.
So hit escape, backspace and in either way
we'll always find ourselves unchanged.

In a world of wires and threads
Of bits and bytes of data
How alone have we become?
Where information superhighways
Are all full of passing cars.
Tragic that traffic keeps moving
And we'd forever remain friends
But yet strangers all in the like.
Forever connected
Yet we remain vigilantly
Alone.
Upon the shores of Malachite
Next to the cobalt seas
Under molten silver slivers of moonbeams
That shatter on the crystal icing
Covering the diamonded waterfall
By the golden sand . . .
Gather the Unicorns
Of Neptune , Uranus , and Pluto and beyond
Playfully cavorting between
Steel seas and emeralded mountains
On the frozen sands of time unchanged
For a thousand Earth's comings

But it's just a dream
A lunacy , a nothingness in the night
All my Unicorns have taken to flight
And were never there
Or were they ?

All the frozen seas . . .
Are now warm Florida Keys
Under a full August moon
And all the mountains . . .
Are impossible fears
That have faded into prairies
Swelling like seas
And there are no proof prints
In the sands of time
Of a far away race
Frozen in time
Daylight 4U2C May 2014
The iron drips from my fingers.
The man gives out a yell.
The child launches, she launches at me.
Sadly her launch had failed.
I chuckled at her, with no pity.
Her frightened face, what a laugh.
The person she’s crying for isn't worth dying for.
After all,
he was a bad man.
It’s funny, so funny, funny the fact.
The fact, she thought if she grabbed my neck then,
maybe, just maybe, maybe I’d die.
I laughed again and finally, I gave out a sigh.
“Poor child,” I said my voice left unchanged.
“You misunderstood. I shouldn't be ashamed.
Your idol has done so many bad things,
now he’ll pay for his sins of adultery,
in a place which this blind man cannot see.
She fell to the ground befalling her tears.
This was the end of her happy years.
What? Did she think it was a fairy tale life?
Reality is sharp, just like a knife.
I laughed at the fact I took his life,
with just one swing of my most dull scythe.
st64 Sep 2013
collector of iron and all things metal
carried without slightest lament
by
beautiful brown-and-white nag with overflowing mane
clip-clops up and down
every road there is
and even beyond



1.
little doubt exists
of fine ingenuity
of said collector
who wastes no moment nor chance
to scour every luck’s platform
with sharp intuition and assiduous eyes
          an old stove with absent racks
          a precious copper geyser gutted with no fittings
          pine-planks discarded due to skew-cuts
          aluminium pipes abandoned with twisted ends
          old screws with rusty whorls from an recently bucket-kicked geezer’s garage
          parts of a car . . . an ****** gearbox and ancient exhausts
heaps of junk and piles of crap clang on cart
a veritable dump in some eyes but those of
the cool collector who takes all the sweepings in gracious stride
cast-off penalties and chaffs of society’s unwanted

2.
once a week on Saturdays
these wares are parked near the parking lot
for all to approach
to see
a fine spread of legend and lore
     bric-à-brac and books to browse
so many things of interest
     magazines and manuals with miscellany-topics under the sun
     hipflasks of silver and clear-cut carafes
     unused greeting-cards with dressed-up paper-dolls
     rare literature well-thumbed with care
and things you’d sure chuck out
mechanical entrails and shiny things
yet
quite a spectacle to behold
costing a joke but for you
a fraction of today's ha'penny

3.
nobody knows why the quiet collector takes the time of day
to re-inforce that fixture-presence
a kindly soul with half-smile always flirting round the lips
and greets with old-century warmth o'er book-edge, markedly a poem-spine
walking closer to peep curiosity around
relaxed eyes let one be
          no compulsive sales-talk
          no eager-****** hopping
just sitting back in deep hiker’s green fold-up chair
easy posture and half-drooped eyes with soft drink close at hand

4.
the collector really watches all who pass
     who go by on their daily trails with rituals oft unchanged
     who fuss ever-plaintive over facetious deets like school-tasks
as they return their books long overdue while whistling smasher-hit tunes (never to be heard)
     who rush to catch an ever-noisy taxi with their own raucous guards
     who help heaving housewives cursing under breath climb on board
as their groceries groan and nearly drop from overladen plastic bags
     who ignore for now with studious intent the hobos on the pavement there
     who beg lost coins for empty-belly from the tattered purses in bosoms
while others cry out impatient at peripheral nuisances
     who act as indiscreet ‘car-guards’ ostensibly guarding cars, even with folk in it

yes, he watches
and observes with keen eyes yet never obvious
even those who saunter by
with pondering glance and walking stick
even as years have graciously touched their brow
he sees them *tut-tut
the ******* on the wall
like stray-dogs in a pound

5.
once in an often while
this collector who loves a rediscovered hypothesis
to explore the myriad facets of humanity
does an odd turn now and then
when walking to the toilet at the local library
which has parked itself adjacent to this lot
drops a twenty-buck note near the side
and soon joyful sees the utter surprise
when tired high-school kids with sullen backpacks
do a double-take
espy their luck . . . whoo-hoo, look!
their gloomy cloaks of learning plain melts
they take off sure-footed and lighter of heart
and repair to the fish-and-chips shop
they share their vinegary ***** in a finger-licking circle
and amity strong-cemented in a cool memory
that they’d recall with fondness many years later
at their 20th school-reunion
and as grand-dads visiting a dying pal

pangs of hunger satisfied
and
not only by them


next time
that note will be dropped in the park nearby
where effete winos sleep their lives away
     who ken much and give not a care
     a kind long not recognised
educated derelicts debate on war-merits and erstwhile musicians play melodic arpeggios
sitting in the gentle arbour-shade of mutual acceptance
with chess-mad players
working out strategy in rapt blade-moves
which belie and scorn the forgotten titles to their name
along with Ph.D to boot

6.
when night-time hails - all grows still again
and settles, though just for a nibble of time
it’s pack-up time
the listening collector hears the owl-hoot’s call
and knows the time has come to rest a bit
     for when the morrow dawns
     all neatly packaged in a brand-new gift called day
it’s back on the road again
to observe once more
with trusted nag in tow
clip-clop . . . clip-CLOP

7.
and the collector is the one
the housewives invite with alacrity to Xmas-lunch
the taxi-drivers offer gifts of goodwill
the school-kids give their chips and last treats
the vagrants seek out to share a ciggie and sympa-chat
the grown men visit for esoteric slim-tomes and philosophical advice
the shopkeepers welcome reassuring presence of

yes, this quiet collector
is the inadvertent guest
to shores of the lonely
the too-busy and life-ridden folk
who seek a sweet smile
just once in a while
in a world
where compassion is not justified by its deep-touches of poverty





no fruitless labour
in one who sees little detriment
but senses the full value of
every item’s moment in vanilla-time
while trying always
to catch
the finest one can be



supreme harvest, indeed
yes :)
love . . . love . . . love . . .





S T, 1 September
Happy Spring Day!
And . . . er . . . catch some sun-rays . . . while ye can :)



Sub – entry : 'empty chairs'

Songwriter: Don McLean


I feel the trembling tingle of a sleepless night
Creep through my fingers and the moon is bright
Beams of blue come flickering through my window pane
Like gypsy moths that dance around a candle flame

And I wonder if you know
That I never understood
That although you said you'd go
Until you did I never thought you would

Moonlight used to bathe the contours of your face
While chestnut hair fell all around the pillow case
And the fragrance of your flowers rest beneath my head
A sympathy bouquet left with the love that's dead

And I wonder if you know
That I never understood
That although you said you'd go
Until you did I never thought you would

Never thought the words you said were true
Never thought you said just what you meant
Never knew how much I needed you
Never thought you'd leave, until you went

Morning comes and morning goes with no regret
And evening brings the memories I can't forget
Empty rooms that echo as I climb the stairs
And empty clothes that drape and fall on empty chairs

And I wonder if you know
That I never understood
That although you said you'd go
Until you did I never thought you would



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AwzHlyVRc9o
I live, I die, I burn, I drown
I endure at once chill and cold
Life is at once too soft and too hard
I have sore troubles mingled with joys

Suddenly I laugh and at the same time cry
And in pleasure many a grief endure
My happiness wanes and yet it lasts unchanged
All at once I dry up and grow green

Thus I suffer love's inconstancies
And when I think the pain is most intense
Without thinking, it is gone again.

Then when I feel my joys certain
And my hour of greatest delight arrived
I find my pain beginning all over once again.
Stephen E Yocum Oct 2013
By Stephen E. Yocum

In 1974, from out of Kabul,
The bouncing open back of
An old flat bed truck,
Eating dust and Diesel fumes,
Two alone we journeyed.

A round the world exploration
Of adventure and discovery.
Of lands and cultures,
people never before encountered.
Naive Ecotourists, before there
Was such a thing, called by a silly name.

The land there about, dry and dusty,
Sparse vegetations, Inhospitable to all,
Featureless and drab beyond comprehension.
Harsh lands breed harsh unforgiving people,
Matching their dire extreme surroundings.
This being one of those places.

I was on an adventure,
More so than she with me,
A rocky marriage at best,
Stressed further by months of travel.
I seeking the raw, the real,
She wanting first class comforts,
Like the “Good Life as seen on TV”.
A rough open flatbed truck, eating dust,
Not even close to fitting that description.

We were going to a small distant town,
Where I might see a game as old,
As that culture, of those Afghan plains,
A game, no truly more of a passion,
A long held national obsession,
Not so much played,
As combated, a war on horseback,
Brutal, ****** and thrilling.

Under noonday sun, yet chill of weather,
An hour out, four mounted horsemen
Appeared over a low hillock horizon,
Their horses in gallop, snorting, prancing,
High stepping, bounding, on a mission,
Kicking up a cloud of yellow/red dust,
The riders making straight for us.

These were the days before the AK-47,
Before the Russian invasion of ‘97.
The tribal Afghan men back then toted old,
Long Barreled, flint lock looking weapons
Often adorned with ribbon or paint,
Looking at first glance merely ornamental,
Not quite dismissing their lethal intent.

I had seen a sheep shot by one of
These old rifles, the entry spot was
The size of an American Half Dollar,
The exit hole the size of a tennis ball exploded.

As they approached, at my direction,
She withdrew further back towards the
Cab of the truck, beside a wooden crate.
I still sat, legs dangling over the tailgate,
One hand holding onto the wood slatted
Vertical, side rail of the bed.
The other hand on the hilt of my 8 inch Buck Knife.
That given the impending situation, would have
Done me as much good as my ******* into the face,
Of a very strong hurricane wind,
Doing me and us more harm than good.
All the while, still watching the horsemen,
As they rapidly approached ever closer.

Ignoring our dust, they reined in less than
Fifteen feet from our rear bumper,
(If there had indeed been a bumper.)
Horses wild eyes rolling, saliva snorting
From their mouths and nostrils,
Lather of sweat coating sleek bodies.
Looking more akin to fierce Dragons than Equines.

Their dusty riders looked like mounted warriors,
Escaped from out of a Hollywood movie,
Full bearded, hard men, with Scars on their faces,
Their serious dust laden red eyes burning like fire.
Jaws firm set, faces otherwise devoid of expression.
Dressed in traditional head to toe garb,
A style unchanged in hundreds of years,
Large curved Knives in wide leather belts,
Two, sporting hefty British holstered revolvers.
All four with long rifles in one hand,
Horse reins in the other.

Just like that, there we all were face to face,
I could not avoid their eyes, locking mine on
The bigger man near the center,
Hiding as best I could, my concern, no my fear,
With a neutral expression, neither smile nor sneer,
That might give me away. Yet the hair on the back
Of my neck did tingle, throat too dry and constricted
To speak should it even be required.  

The bigger man into whose eyes I stared,
As if I had issued some challenged invitation,
With but a single practiced move of his,
Right arm and hand,
(Horse reins held in the other),
Quickly shouldered his menacing weapon,
And sighted down its long barrel, right at my head.

Perhaps it was only a few seconds,
Yet it seemed an eternity,
That gun’s bore looked immense,
Like the gapping open mouth,
Of some great ballistic cannon.
For a moment I ceased breathing.
It felt as if my heart stopped beating.
I could not but sit there waiting,
There was no escaping.

That throw back to a fiftieth century man,
Held the power, of Life or sudden death,
In his hand, my life on the tip of his trigger finger,
He and I both instantly understood this.

It was clear in that one moment,
That to him, this was nothing new,
Or even of the slightest importance.
A thing to which he was plainly indifferent.

Down that bore, was a place in which lurked,
A lethal bullet with my name written upon it,
I felt trapped, like screaming, but remained silent,
Eyes open, and then why I will never know,
Still looking at him I narrowed my eyes and smiled.

As perhaps a reply on the man’s harsh face,
There appeared an ever so slightest grin.
Then he hefted his weapon back down under,
His arm and silently smiled and laughed,
In my direction.

I could not help but notice that one of his
Upper front teeth was of bright gold, while the
One next to the gold, was completely missing.

He nodded just once his head, to me a message,
All said with no words actually spoken,
“Today traveler,
I could have killed you,
Taken your woman.
Out here no one would know,
No one would have cared,
Not even the truck driver.
You are in my homeland,
I control it and you,
Today I choose not to **** you,
Tomorrow I might feel different.”

Then he and his unsmiling companions,
****** their straining unyielding horses,
to their left, galloping away in an obscuring
cloud, of yellow and reddish dust billowing.

While adrenaline turned my arms and
Legs to jelly, and shortly thereafter,
My stomach to sudden fits of
Wrenching regurgitation.

When in a few years I first heard,
That the Russians had invaded
That harsh unforgiving land,
I told a friend,
“Those fool Russians,
Have grabbed a fearsome,
Tiger by the tail, and that beast
Might just devourer them,
And not the other way around.”
It came to pass, I was not far off,
In my knowledgeable easy prediction.

The lesson I learned that day?
No matter who you think you are,
Or where you might come from,
What Nations impressive seal,
That your Passport reveals,
When you travel far and wide,
Trespass in another man’s back yard,
You best beware, of all the possibilities.

Upon our return trip the next day,
We took a bus of public conveyance,
Imagining perhaps there would be,
More safety in a convergence of numbers.

Footnote:

Over the centuries many invaders
Have attempted to subdue the wild
Land of the Afghans’ and nearly all failed.
A land and a people offering absolutely,
No forgiveness, not even to themselves.

Rudyard Kipling wrote of the British Empires brief
Excursions into that land, offering some sage advice;
“When you’re wounded and left on the Afghanistan’s
Plains, and the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains and go to
Your God like a soldier.”

All present and would be conquers take note,
This remains Wise advice.  No one truly conquers there,
They just visit and bleed and then eventually go away,
Tails tucked between their knees. If indeed they still
Have one.
I have not collected many regrets, however as too that
Day in 1974, on the back of that battered old truck on
The plains of Afghanistan, I have one.
Minutes before those four threatening Horsemen
Appeared, I had capped and return my Nikon F camera
to its dust and water proof cover, when the incident
occurred, that bag and my camera were at the time,
snugly strapped to my back.
I dreamed that dead, and meditating,
I lay upon a grave, or bed,
(at least, some cold and close-built bower).
In the cold heart, its final thought
stood frozen, drawn immense and clear,
stiff and idle as I was there;
and we remained unchanged together
for a year, a minute, an hour.
Suddenly there was a motion,
as startling, there, to every sense
as an explosion.  Then it dropped
to insistent, cautious creeping
in the region of the heart,
prodding me from desperate sleep.
I raised my head.  A slight young ****
had pushed up through the heart and its
green head was nodding on the breast.
(All this was in the dark.)
It grew an inch like a blade of grass;
next, one leaf shot out of its side
a twisting, waving flag, and then
two leaves moved like a semaphore.
The stem grew thick. The nervous roots
reached to each side; the graceful head
changed its position mysteriously,
since there was neither sun nor moon
to catch its young attention.
The rooted heart began to change
(not beat) and then it split apart
and from it broke a flood of water.
Two rivers glanced off from the sides,
one to the right, one to the left,
two rushing, half-clear streams,
(the ribs made of them two cascades)
which assuredly, smooth as glass,
went off through the fine black grains of earth.
The **** was almost swept away;
it struggled with its leaves,
lifting them fringed with heavy drops.
A few drops fell upon my face
and in my eyes, so I could see
(or, in that black place, thought I saw)
that each drop contained a light,
a small, illuminated scene;
the ****-deflected stream was made
itself of racing images.
(As if a river should carry all
the scenes that it had once reflected
shut in its waters, and not floating
on momentary surfaces.)
The **** stood in the severed heart.
"What are you doing there?" I asked.
It lifted its head all dripping wet
(with my own thoughts?)
and answered then: "I grow," it said,
"but to divide your heart again."
She flies random beautiful,seeking me, my sweet nectar,
Thats but her nature, seek the juice, the honey of my heart,
I crane and bend so she may get, all she wants,stay a bit longer,
Dip into my soul, feel the love,of my earth, my roots below,
Impatient wings fluttering, the sucker scraping my valves.
Fluttering and falling are petals,pain shooting to the roots,
Weak flowery embrace ineffective, off she flies, free, gay and filled,
I let her go, stoic, my roots burned, but gladly still a flower,still me!

MAX CHELUR.
Fishing boat pursue water love hill spring
Both banks peach blossom arrive ancient river crossing
Travel look red tree not know far
Travel furthest blue stream not see people
Mountain mouth stealthy move begin cave profound
Mountain open spacious view spin flat land
Far see one place accumulate cloud tree
Nearby join 1000 homes scattered flower bamboo
Firewood person first express Han surname given name
Reside person not change Qin clothing clothing
Reside person together live Wu Ling source
Still from outside outside build field orchard
Moon bright pine below room pen quiet
Sun through cloud middle chicken dog noisy
Surprise hear common visitor contend arrive gather
Compete lead back home ask all town
At brightness alley alley sweep blossom begin
Approach dusk fisher woodman via water return
Beginning reason evade earth leave person among
Change ask god immortal satisfy not return
Gorge inside who know be human affairs
World middle far gaze sky cloud hill
Not doubt magic place hard hear see
Dust heart not exhaust think country country
Beyond hole not decide away hill water
Leave home eventually plan far travel spread
Self say pass through old not lost
Who know peak gully now arrive change
Now only mark entrance hill deep
Blue stream how many times reach cloud forest
Spring come all over be peach blossom water
Not know immortal source what place search


A fisher's boat chased the water into the coveted hills,
Both banks were covered in peach blossom at the ancient river crossing.
He knew not how far he sailed, gazing at the reddened trees,
He travelled to the end of the blue stream, seeing no man on the way.
Then finding a crack in the hillside, he squeezed through the deepest of caves,
And beyond the mountain a vista opened of flat land all about!
In the distance he saw clouds and trees gathered together,
Nearby amongst a thousand homes flowers and bamboo were scattered.
A wood-gatherer was the first to speak a Han-era name,
The inhabitants' dress was unchanged since the time of Qin.
The people lived together on uplands above Wu Ling river,
Apart from the outside world they laid their fields and plantations.
Below the pines and the bright moon, all was quiet in the houses,
When the sun started to shine through the clouds, the chickens and dogs gave voice.
Startled to find a stranger amongst them, the people jostled around,
They competed to invite him in and ask about his home.
As brightness came, the lanes had all been swept of blossom,
By dusk, along the water the fishers and woodsmen returned.
To escape the troubled world they had first left men's society,
They live as if become immortals, no reason now to return.
In that valley they knew nothing of the way we live outside,
From within our world we gaze afar at empty clouds and hills.
Who would not doubt that magic place so hard to find,
The fisher's worldly heart could not stop thinking of his home.
He left that land, but its hills and rivers never left his heart,
Eventually he again set out, and planned to journey back.
By memory, he passed along the way he'd taken before,
Who could know the hills and gullies had now completely changed?
Now he faced only the great mountain where he remembered the entrance,
Each time he followed the clear stream, he found only cloud and forest.
Spring comes, and all again is peach blossom and water,
No-one knows how to reach that immortal place.
Josh Jul 2017
You are made of ivory and gold
Your lips could rewrite history
From but a brief touch
You have rewritten me
Yet you remain unchanged
Porcelain, china, marble or gold
You are timeless beauty
Never to know the ages ruin
Or the terror of slowly growing old
Your hands will not wither
Nor your eyes and dreams fade
You will remain as you did
On the day you were truly made
Nigh on twenty you were made
Not born, but made, to you
And since then, to the world you have not changed
Though inside I do not know if this is true
None can penetrate your façade
Your mask of beauty and charm
You will not relinquish your weapon of a silver tongue
As though you fear the whole world means you harm
You do not know how easy you pass
With wit and boyish charm
Against all obstacles you need only smile
And all your enemies are disarmed
Another one from my self published book "ivory and gold " available on Amazon.
anu Jun 2015
Once, I Sat And Studied
And Now, I 'm Standing And Make Them Studying

GOT GREAT FEEL
When I Become A Teacher
Because It Gave Me Space To Move With My Own Teacher
When moving with my own teacher as a teacher felt very happy...
Still today i stood when my teacher crosses me. i think they thought this  way of  respecting others...Thank them all...
Thank God for giving such teachers...
Nat Lipstadt Mar 2017
Forest inquires:

How do you decide, choose your design, find its guise,
give it a face, surrender to the poem's own
vanity,
        and choose the poem's alignment?


                                                  an­ answer forms:

this alignment idea,
you think it simple,
everybody understands
what your inquiry means

alignment -  the appropriate relative position

we live in relative position to each other, our poems too, for they are but written synapses of our close captioned interactions, seemingly random, but assuredly not, as we invest in ourselves, seeking the mysterious appropriate answer
                                                                ­                        from the Theory of Poetic Relativity

                                                   ­             i love your question;                              hold it to my nostrils,          
                                             ­             smell the coffee aroma wake up blast inherent;
                                                                ­      
 kiss its robust childlike cheeks for the simple   soulfulness essential arousal;
for you see sir you have found
the appropriate position that relates us, our mindful words;

                                 answer no good, wholly insufficient?
                                        perfect.
                          as i close this quick cooked to perfection laboratory solution, take note

                              
                            ­                        the earth has moved
                                our hearts have beaten a measly thousand times
                                    time and space have appropriated our prior
                                          
relativity

when you return years hence this poem's shape will perforce have moved. for words are weathered flux constant and yet inherently unchanged except for the part of us that changes with every re-reading  

and what was


**right before has left and the center has moved again
Nat,

This is probably just an insane thing of mine, but I cannot stand the center aligned formatted poetry. I want to read the poetry, but why center? I want to know why it is center aligned? If it is a metaphor for how poetry could/should serve as a balancing point, a countervailing force for a point, perhaps I could understand...but so many poems center aligned, I don't know, I am probably missing something.

A right aligned poem? Perhaps I could understand, if the content was asking me to revolt, to revolutionize, to counter the status quo. But a centered poem? What does the alignment mean?

anyway, it has been a long time since I've been around, keep writing, hope you are well.

-forest
The south-wind brings
Life, sunshine, and desire,
And on every mount and meadow
Breathes aromatic fire,
But over the dead he has no power,
The lost, the lost he cannot restore,
And, looking over the hills, I mourn
The darling who shall not return.

I see my empty house,
I see my trees repair their boughs,
And he, —the wondrous child,
Whose silver warble wild
Outvalued every pulsing sound
Within the air's cerulean round,
The hyacinthine boy, for whom
Morn well might break, and April bloom,
The gracious boy, who did adorn
The world whereinto he was born,
And by his countenance repay
The favor of the loving Day,
Has disappeared from the Day's eye;
Far and wide she cannot find him,
My hopes pursue, they cannot bind him.
Returned this day the south-wind searches
And finds young pines and budding birches,
But finds not the budding man;
Nature who lost him, cannot remake him;
Fate let him fall, Fate can't retake him;
Nature, Fate, men, him seek in vain.

And whither now, my truant wise and sweet,
Oh, whither tend thy feet?
I had the right, few days ago,
Thy steps to watch, thy place to know;
How have I forfeited the right?
Hast thou forgot me in a new delight?
I hearken for thy household cheer,
O eloquent child!
Whose voice, an equal messenger,
Conveyed thy meaning mild.
What though the pains and joys
Whereof it spoke were toys
Fitting his age and ken;—
Yet fairest dames and bearded men,
Who heard the sweet request
So gentle, wise, and grave,
Bended with joy to his behest,
And let the world's affairs go by,
Awhile to share his cordial game,
Or mend his wicker wagon frame,
Still plotting how their hungry ear
That winsome voice again might hear,
For his lips could well pronounce
Words that were persuasions.

Gentlest guardians marked serene
His early hope, his liberal mien,
Took counsel from his guiding eyes
To make this wisdom earthly wise.
Ah! vainly do these eyes recall
The school-march, each day's festival,
When every morn my ***** glowed
To watch the convoy on the road;—
The babe in willow wagon closed,
With rolling eyes and face composed,
With children forward and behind,
Like Cupids studiously inclined,
And he, the Chieftain, paced beside,
The centre of the troop allied,
With sunny face of sweet repose,
To guard the babe from fancied foes,
The little Captain innocent
Took the eye with him as he went,
Each village senior paused to scan
And speak the lovely caravan.

From the window I look out
To mark thy beautiful parade
Stately marching in cap and coat
To some tune by fairies played;
A music heard by thee alone
To works as noble led thee on.
Now love and pride, alas, in vain,
Up and down their glances strain.
The painted sled stands where it stood,
The kennel by the corded wood,
The gathered sticks to stanch the wall
Of the snow-tower, when snow should fall,
The ominous hole he dug in the sand,
And childhood's castles built or planned.
His daily haunts I well discern,
The poultry yard, the shed, the barn,
And every inch of garden ground
Paced by the blessed feet around,
From the road-side to the brook;
Whereinto he loved to look.
Step the meek birds where erst they ranged,
The wintry garden lies unchanged,
The brook into the stream runs on,
But the deep-eyed Boy is gone.

On that shaded day,
Dark with more clouds than tempests are,
When thou didst yield thy innocent breath
In bird-like heavings unto death,
Night came, and Nature had not thee,—
I said, we are mates in misery.
The morrow dawned with needless glow,
Each snow-bird chirped, each fowl must crow,
Each tramper started,— but the feet
Of the most beautiful and sweet
Of human youth had left the hill
And garden,—they were bound and still,
There's not a sparrow or a wren,
There's not a blade of autumn grain,
Which the four seasons do not tend,
And tides of life and increase lend,
And every chick of every bird,
And **** and rock-moss is preferred.
O ostriches' forgetfulness!
O loss of larger in the less!
Was there no star that could be sent,
No watcher in the firmament,
No angel from the countless host,
That loiters round the crystal coast,
Could stoop to heal that only child,
Nature's sweet marvel undefiled,
And keep the blossom of the earth,
Which all her harvests were not worth?
Not mine, I never called thee mine,
But nature's heir,— if I repine,
And, seeing rashly torn and moved,
Not what I made, but what I loved.
Grow early old with grief that then
Must to the wastes of nature go,—
'Tis because a general hope
Was quenched, and all must doubt and *****
For flattering planets seemed to say,
This child should ills of ages stay,—
By wondrous tongue and guided pen
Bring the flown muses back to men. —
Perchance, not he, but nature ailed,
The world, and not the infant failed,
It was not ripe yet, to sustain
A genius of so fine a strain,
Who gazed upon the sun and moon
As if he came unto his own,
And pregnant with his grander thought,
Brought the old order into doubt.
Awhile his beauty their beauty tried,
They could not feed him, and he died,
And wandered backward as in scorn
To wait an Æon to be born.
Ill day which made this beauty waste;
Plight broken, this high face defaced!
Some went and came about the dead,
And some in books of solace read,
Some to their friends the tidings say,
Some went to write, some went to pray,
One tarried here, there hurried one,
But their heart abode with none.
Covetous death bereaved us all
To aggrandize one funeral.
The eager Fate which carried thee
Took the largest part of me.
For this losing is true dying,
This is lordly man's down-lying,
This is slow but sure reclining,
Star by star his world resigning.

O child of Paradise!
Boy who made dear his father's home
In whose deep eyes
Men read the welfare of the times to come;
I am too much bereft;
The world dishonored thou hast left;
O truths and natures costly lie;
O trusted, broken prophecy!
O richest fortune sourly crossed;
Born for the future, to the future lost!

The deep Heart answered, Weepest thou?
Worthier cause for passion wild,
If I had not taken the child.
And deemest thou as those who pore
With aged eyes short way before?
Think'st Beauty vanished from the coast
Of matter, and thy darling lost?
Taught he not thee, — the man of eld,
Whose eyes within his eyes beheld
Heaven's numerous hierarchy span
The mystic gulf from God to man?
To be alone wilt thou begin,
When worlds of lovers hem thee in?
To-morrow, when the masks shall fall
That dizen nature's carnival,
The pure shall see, by their own will,
Which overflowing love shall fill,—
'Tis not within the force of Fate
The fate-conjoined to separate.
But thou, my votary, weepest thou?
I gave thee sight, where is it now?
I taught thy heart beyond the reach
Of ritual, Bible, or of speech;
Wrote in thy mind's transparent table
As far as the incommunicable;
Taught thee each private sign to raise
Lit by the supersolar blaze.
Past utterance and past belief,
And past the blasphemy of grief,
The mysteries of nature's heart,—
And though no muse can these impart,
Throb thine with nature's throbbing breast,
And all is clear from east to west.

I came to thee as to a friend,
Dearest, to thee I did not send
Tutors, but a joyful eye,
Innocence that matched the sky,
Lovely locks a form of wonder,
Laughter rich as woodland thunder;
That thou might'st entertain apart
The richest flowering of all art;
And, as the great all-loving Day
Through smallest chambers takes its way,
That thou might'st break thy daily bread
With Prophet, Saviour, and head;
That thou might'st cherish for thine own
The riches of sweet Mary's Son,
Boy-Rabbi, Israel's Paragon:
And thoughtest thou such guest
Would in thy hall take up his rest?
Would rushing life forget its laws,
Fate's glowing revolution pause?
High omens ask diviner guess,
Not to be conned to tediousness.
And know, my higher gifts unbind
The zone that girds the incarnate mind,
When the scanty shores are full
With Thought's perilous whirling pool,
When frail Nature can no more,—
Then the spirit strikes the hour,
My servant Death with solving rite
Pours finite into infinite.
Wilt thou freeze love's tidal flow,
Whose streams through nature circling go?
Nail the star struggling to its track
On the half-climbed Zodiack?
Light is light which radiates,
Blood is blood which circulates,
Life is life which generates,
And many-seeming life is one,—
Wilt thou transfix and make it none,
Its onward stream too starkly pent
In figure, bone, and lineament?

Wilt thou uncalled interrogate
Talker! the unreplying fate?
Nor see the Genius of the whole
Ascendant in the private soul,
Beckon it when to go and come,
Self-announced its hour of doom.
Fair the soul's recess and shrine,
Magic-built, to last a season,
Masterpiece of love benign!
Fairer than expansive reason
Whose omen 'tis, and sign.
Wilt thou not ope this heart to know
What rainbows teach and sunsets show,
Verdict which accumulates
From lengthened scroll of human fates,
Voice of earth to earth returned,
Prayers of heart that inly burned;
Saying, what is excellent,
As God lives, is permanent
Hearts are dust, hearts' loves remain,
Heart's love will meet thee again.
Revere the Maker; fetch thine eye
Up to His style, and manners of the sky.
Not of adamant and gold
Built He heaven stark and cold,
No, but a nest of bending reeds,
Flowering grass and scented weeds,
Or like a traveller's fleeting tent,
Or bow above the tempest pent,
Built of tears and sacred flames,
And virtue reaching to its aims;
Built of furtherance and pursuing,
Not of spent deeds, but of doing.
Silent rushes the swift Lord
Through ruined systems still restored,
Broad-sowing, bleak and void to bless,
Plants with worlds the wilderness,
Waters with tears of ancient sorrow
Apples of Eden ripe to-morrow;
House and tenant go to ground,
Lost in God, in Godhead found.
13 Apr 2014
There’s a time and season for every reason
no cookie bakes itself
cherries don’t burst on their own
cherries don’t burst *******!
a bottle doesn’t empty itself to full/fill
breaking clocks is a wonderful way to **** time
ironic glory hole of blood and glass
running out of test tubes, the ****’s too tight
****… reason!
INVEST!

Admiration is the state furthest away from understanding
pawns don’t need details
******* with teeth make ******* meaningful
smashing the cow softens it, …digest it well
meaning is derived from screening STD g string
of a starry eyed jail-bait that drowns in a sea of ******
obtuse and absolute are the only submissions
failure to comprehend results in *******
cuckolds worth….
IMPROVE!

Lexicon laxative
this antipathy won’t last
stimulate thinking with cankerous drinking
***** ***** need no season or reason
to drown ****** who never show
the tears of heaven that understood
misled admiration and adolescent aberration
that silently candle deplorable fornication
time stays unchanged
counting doesn’t prove progress in this game
falling short… half beat hesitation
ITERATE!
Posted on October 19, 2013
Ottar Aug 2013
I

Gut drawn across history, reaching to this day and a time,
                                               teaching to play the sublime,
hourglass.
Where no grain has gone through that passage, unchanged
           And some wait at the threshold, not ready, unsteady.
There is a tug o'war back and forth,
till time always wins.
Time or forgiveness erases my straight forward sins.
All that bends lined up just so,
timeless,
fast or slow,
no one alive knows!
Just how it was meant to be
so let it...


II

Can you catch them, the leaves of fall,
is there chase enough in you to play with them all,
as the sounds of Autumn, have the pace,
which invites you play face to face with
what you hold, end of the rainbow,
Summers gold, treasured,
with subtle pleasure.

Where is your wisdom, where is the care, you leave behind
to find some solemn place of peace,
in a world that won't let you practice your passion,
it is after all out of fashion,
so bow a little more
and I will listen for the wind,
which may blow your notes like leaves and sheetmusic,
like laundry on the lines,
which you have to memorize or read,
in the cold
until the sun sets, the lights dim and the candle wick
is extinguished.
Still you dream of summer.


III

Sitting in the outdoors on a chair built for two,
I sit alone, so much to see and to hear,
as there is music playing, but I do not know from where,
the bees buzz and travel like they can feel the vibrations,
dragonflies dance in pairs, wingtips touching the sky and clouds,
hummingbirds find the flowers sweeter than before,
is that a cello out of doors?,
but the traffic on the street, fails to compete,
and the music goes on and I am replete,
but I listen still, to drink in more,
I would rather be no other place than where I am now
I close my eyes, and keep them that way as
I fear surprises among other things,
but this music is filled with the comfort it brings
the empty space beside me in this double chair,
if the empty space were to leave what would I have?,
feed me in my loneliness,
fill me, though I may be alone,
I will be able to share,
the Joy of caring,
with any who come near and love what I love best,
but my emptiness moves with me,
when music, like love, is a test of trust.

IV

The rocks meant to trip me up make my feet find footing,
as to step on the wrong rock means to fall
on my face
or land displaced,
oh the hard, hard heart-ed rocks,
my fingers lose skin,
don't trust my eyes
alone
don't trust my feet
alone
don't trust my memory,
to get me home,
I have to forget where I was so I can know to keep
going, because I need to go,
to the water,
the clear water,
it gives me credence,
when the water runs clear,
I drink it in and I am revived,
so pour this rocky music into me and
when I wake up, I will take up where life
has left off. And give it another day on the rocky slopes
that rocks my hopes,
there is no easy life.

V

Are your days dragged on for many hours past twenty four?
They at work want you to work more for less,
you walk in the door to change your dress,
and out you go again, so you pack you wallet with
cash, credit and disdain,
you walk slow as to shuffle not to be resistant,
so you actually see something near or distant
that resembles life in the normal lane,
instead your ups take you down,
from there all you do is look up,
up and away.
The music mocks your life
of strife,
your significant other half,
is more than you will ever be,
there is no end to the mockery,
so pick up your bow,
and reach not for an arrow,
but strike your muscles and your nerves,
to see if you are alive after all,
well...?
Beware
Beware
for only fools imitate the wolves by
howling at the blood moon.
Or jaywalk without looking,
or stay on the treadmill from hour one beyond twenty four.
Time, the monotone and remains the same,
it us who fill the hours, for shame, at the pace.  


VI

Oh jump and run and hide as it has all been a dream,
the ogres are in the hills and trolls are under every bridge,
the master walks the fence line banging his club every twenty paces,
to see if any faces peek out from the shrubs which need trimming
and he sends his dogs to ferret out the weasel faced boys,
and the pink pigs with pigtails,
while we hid in the oak on the hill watching the sun stand
stock still and the tall trees dust the sky as they move in the breeze,
making room for the heart shaped moon,
for my love, my love...
we will soon be apart and no glue will hold us
together,
and once we will be together again it will
be like we never parted,
but you left me so soon at a terrible cost, on my heart strings
each butterfly that goes by lightly
reminds me of you,
each single cotton ball cloud,
that floats my way,
I wait for it to come over-head,
no, I run to where it is so,
I
can see your face gently in the shadows
and contours but you are playing at hiding while
I
seek your beauty in all things,
all things,
all things,
that we said were ours and did not possess,
because it all belongs to God.
As do you.

Sadly I must wait here for my time,
I will listen to this music, as I am by myself
lone cellist playing
while I hold it all in,
please come close before he plays the last staff,
the last bar, the last note,
then I will rest, sleep, dream and float,
on the notes he has played as they
carry me as close to you,
so I am sure to catch your tears.



Final Thoughts (Incomplete)
The measure of the flesh is found in six pieces, of these cello suites.
The measure of the heart for music is opened in these six pieces of mystery.
They that sound, from time to time, that they were composed yesterday.


©DWE29082013
Inspired by listening to Cello Suites No. 1 through No. 6 by JS Bach by Various artists, especially Pau (Pablo) Casals and reading the Cello Suites by Eric Siblin, great read, if you like that sort of thing.  
I think, I know that this poem will be in progress for a long time, until I find some understanding, of music theory or learn to play the violoncello. Started 20130825 finished 20130829
I shall go away
To the brown hills, the quiet ones,
The vast, the mountainous, the rolling,
Sun-fired and drowsy!

My horse snuffs delicately
At the strange wind;
He settles to a swinging trot; his hoofs ***** the dust.
The road winds, straightens,
Slashes a marsh,
Shoulders out a bridge,
Then --
Again the hills.
Unchanged, innumerable,
Bowing huge, round backs;
Holding secret, immense converse:
In gusty voices,
Fruitful, fecund, toiling
Like yoked black oxen.

The clouds pass like great, slow thoughts
And vanish
In the intense blue.

My horse lopes; the saddle creaks and sways.
A thousand glittering spears of sun slant from on high.
The immensity, the spaces,
Are like the spaces
Between star and star.

The hills sleep.
If I put my hand on one,
I would feel the vast heave of its breath.
I would start away before it awakened
And shook the world from its shoulders.
A cicada's cry deepens the hot silence.
The hills open
To show a ***** of poppies,
Ardent, noble, heroic,
A flare, a great flame of orange;
Giving sleepy, brittle scent
That stings the lungs.
A creeping wind slips through them like a ferret; they bow and dance,
answering Beauty's voice . . .

The horse whinnies. I dismount
And tie him to the grey worn fence.
I set myself against the javelins of grass and sun;
And climb the rounded breast,
That flows like a sea-wave.
The summit crackles with heat, there is no shelter, no hollow from
the flagellating glare.

I lie down and look at the sky, shading my eyes.
My body becomes strange, the sun takes it and changes it, it does not feel,
it is like the body of another.
The air blazes. The air is diamond.
Small noises move among the grass . . .

Blackly,
A hawk mounts, mounts in the inane
Seeking the star-road,
Seeking the end . . .
But there is no end.

Here, in this light, there is no end. . .
jaleigh flippen Apr 2015
I cradle the thought of my soul deferring from my body, as if death were a newborn to be adored. as my efforts towards nurturing this ideal reach expiration, a broad emptiness conquers my internal being; and I fear I will drift through time unchanged. hear me, propellers are necessary in the water and legs on land- but I'm no ship, and I have ropes tying my born given feet to my hands.
in my opinion, overcoming the fear of your depression is the most important thing. im attempting to do just that, and this is myself putting it into words.
r Feb 2015
We still call the homeplace mom's
Calendar in the kitchen unchanged

Two years past
The old clock ticking

Branches tapping against a window
Iron Mountain through frozen rain

Like a silverback
White along the spine
Cold and silent

Strong against another winter.

r ~ 2/2/15
\¥/\
|    home
/ \
Somewhat back from the village street
Stands the old-fashioned country-seat.
Across its antique portico
Tall poplar-trees their shadows throw;
And from its station in the hall
An ancient timepiece says to all,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

Half-way up the stairs it stands,
And points and beckons with its hands
From its case of massive oak,
Like a monk, who, under his cloak,
Crosses himself, and sighs, alas!
With sorrowful voice to all who pass,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

By day its voice is low and light;
But in the silent dead of night,
Distinct as a passing footstep’s fall,
It echoes along the vacant hall,
Along the ceiling, along the floor,
And seems to say, at each chamber-door,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

Through days of sorrow and of mirth,
Through days of death and days of birth,
Through every swift vicissitude
Of changeful time, unchanged it has stood,
And as if, like God, it all things saw,
It calmly repeats those words of awe,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

In that mansion used to be
Free-hearted Hospitality;
His great fires up the chimney roared;
The stranger feasted at his board;
But, like the skeleton at the feast,
That warning timepiece never ceased,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

There groups of merry children played,
There youths and maidens dreaming strayed;
O precious hours! O golden prime,
And affluence of love and time!
Even as a miser counts his gold,
Those hours the ancient timepiece told,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

From that chamber, clothed in white,
The bride came forth on her wedding night;
There, in that silent room below,
The dead lay in his shroud of snow;
And in the hush that followed the prayer,
Was heard the old clock on the stair,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

All are scattered now and fled,
Some are married, some are dead;
And when I ask, with throbs of pain,
“Ah! when shall they all meet again?”
As in the days long since gone by,
The ancient timepiece makes reply,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”

Never here, forever there,
Where all parting, pain, and care,
And death, and time shall disappear,—
Forever there, but never here!
The horologe of Eternity
Sayeth this incessantly,—
    “Forever—never!
    Never—forever!”
Many a green isle needs must be
In the deep wide sea of Misery,
Or the mariner, worn and wan,
Never thus could voyage on—
Day and night, and night and day,
Drifting on his dreary way,
With the solid darkness black
Closing round his vessel’s track:
Whilst above the sunless sky,
Big with clouds, hangs heavily,
And behind the tempest fleet
Hurries on with lightning feet,

He is ever drifted on
O’er the unreposing wave
To the haven of the grave.
What, if there no friends will greet;
What, if there no heart will meet
His with love’s impatient beat;
Wander wheresoe’er he may,
Can he dream before that day
To find refuge from distress
In friendship’s smile, in love’s caress?
Then ’twill wreak him little woe
Whether such there be or no:
Senseless is the breast, and cold,
Which relenting love would fold;
Bloodless are the veins and chill
Which the pulse of pain did fill;
Every little living nerve
That from bitter words did swerve
Round the tortured lips and brow,
Are like sapless leaflets now
Frozen upon December’s bough.

On the beach of a northern sea
Which tempests shake eternally,
As once the wretch there lay to sleep,
Lies a solitary heap,
One white skull and seven dry bones,
On the margin of the stones,
Where a few grey rushes stand,
Boundaries of the sea and land:
Nor is heard one voice of wail
But the sea-mews, as they sail
O’er the billows of the gale;
Or the whirlwind up and down
Howling, like a slaughtered town,
When a king in glory rides
Through the pomp and fratricides:
Those unburied bones around
There is many a mournful sound;
There is no lament for him,
Like a sunless vapour, dim,
Who once clothed with life and thought
What now moves nor murmurs not.

Ay, many flowering islands lie
In the waters of wide Agony:
To such a one this morn was led,
My bark by soft winds piloted:
’Mid the mountains Euganean
I stood listening to the paean
With which the legioned rooks did hail
The sun’s uprise majestical;
Gathering round with wings all ****,
Through the dewy mist they soar
Like gray shades, till the eastern heaven
Bursts, and then, as clouds of even,
Flecked with fire and azure, lie
In the unfathomable sky,
So their plumes of purple grain,
Starred with drops of golden rain,
Gleam above the sunlight woods,
As in silent multitudes
On the morning’s fitful gale
Through the broken mist they sail,
And the vapours cloven and gleaming
Follow, down the dark steep streaming,
Till all is bright, and clear, and still,
Round the solitary hill.

Beneath is spread like a green sea
The waveless plain of Lombardy,
Bounded by the vaporous air,
Islanded by cities fair;
Underneath Day’s azure eyes
Ocean’s nursling, Venice, lies,
A peopled labyrinth of walls,
Amphitrite’s destined halls,
Which her hoary sire now paves
With his blue and beaming waves.
Lo! the sun upsprings behind,
Broad, red, radiant, half-reclined
On the level quivering line
Of the waters crystalline;
And before that chasm of light,
As within a furnace bright,
Column, tower, and dome, and spire,
Shine like obelisks of fire,
Pointing with inconstant motion
From the altar of dark ocean
To the sapphire-tinted skies;
As the flames of sacrifice
From the marble shrines did rise,
As to pierce the dome of gold
Where Apollo spoke of old.

Sea-girt City, thou hast been
Ocean’s child, and then his queen;
Now is come a darker day,
And thou soon must be his prey,
If the power that raised thee here
Hallow so thy watery bier.
A less drear ruin then than now,
With thy conquest-branded brow
Stooping to the slave of slaves
From thy throne, among the waves
Wilt thou be, when the sea-mew
Flies, as once before it flew,
O’er thine isles depopulate,
And all is in its ancient state,
Save where many a palace gate
With green sea-flowers overgrown
Like a rock of Ocean’s own,
Topples o’er the abandoned sea
As the tides change sullenly.
The fisher on his watery way,
Wandering at the close of day,
Will spread his sail and seize his oar
Till he pass the gloomy shore,
Lest thy dead should, from their sleep
Bursting o’er the starlight deep,
Lead a rapid masque of death
O’er the waters of his path.

Those who alone thy towers behold
Quivering through aereal gold,
As I now behold them here,
Would imagine not they were
Sepulchres, where human forms,
Like pollution-nourished worms,
To the corpse of greatness cling,
Murdered, and now mouldering:
But if Freedom should awake
In her omnipotence and shake
From the Celtic Anarch’s hold
All the keys of dungeons cold,
Where a hundred cities lie
Chained like thee, ingloriously,
Thou and all thy sister band
Might adorn this sunny land,
Twining memories of old time
With new virtues more sublime;
If not, perish thou ldering:
But if Freedom should awake
In her omnipotence and shake
From the Celtic Anarch’s hold
All the keys of dungeons cold,
Where a hundred cities lie
Chained like thee, ingloriously,
Thou and all thy sister band
Might adorn this sunny land,
Twining memories of old time
With new virtues more sublime;
If not, perish thou and they!—
Clouds which stain truth’s rising day
By her sun consumed away—
Earth can spare ye; while like flowers,
In the waste of years and hours,
From your dust new nations spring
With more kindly blossoming.

Perish—let there only be
Floating o’er thy heartless sea
As the garment of thy sky
Clothes the world immortally,
One remembrance, more sublime
Than the tattered pall of time,
Which scarce hides thy visage wan;—
That a tempest-cleaving Swan
Of the sons of Albion,
Driven from his ancestral streams
By the might of evil dreams,
Found a nest in thee; and Ocean
Welcomed him with such emotion
That its joy grew his, and sprung
From his lips like music flung
O’er a mighty thunder-fit,
Chastening terror:—what though yet
Poesy’s unfailing River,
Which through Albion winds forever
Lashing with melodious wave
Many a sacred Poet’s grave,
Mourn its latest nursling fled?
What though thou with all thy dead
Scarce can for this fame repay
Aught thine own? oh, rather say
Though thy sins and slaveries foul
Overcloud a sunlike soul?
As the ghost of Homer clings
Round Scamander’s wasting springs;
As divinest Shakespeare’s might
Fills Avon and the world with light
Like omniscient power which he
Imaged ’mid mortality;
As the love from Petrarch’s urn,
Yet amid yon hills doth burn,
A quenchless lamp by which the heart
Sees things unearthly;—so thou art,
Mighty spirit—so shall be
The City that did refuge thee.

Lo, the sun floats up the sky
Like thought-winged Liberty,
Till the universal light
Seems to level plain and height;
From the sea a mist has spread,
And the beams of morn lie dead
On the towers of Venice now,
Like its glory long ago.
By the skirts of that gray cloud
Many-domed Padua proud
Stands, a peopled solitude,
’Mid the harvest-shining plain,
Where the peasant heaps his grain
In the garner of his foe,
And the milk-white oxen slow
With the purple vintage strain,
Heaped upon the creaking wain,
That the brutal Celt may swill
Drunken sleep with savage will;
And the sickle to the sword
Lies unchanged, though many a lord,
Like a **** whose shade is poison,
Overgrows this region’s foison,
Sheaves of whom are ripe to come
To destruction’s harvest-home:
Men must reap the things they sow,
Force from force must ever flow,
Or worse; but ’tis a bitter woe
That love or reason cannot change
The despot’s rage, the slave’s revenge.

Padua, thou within whose walls
Those mute guests at festivals,
Son and Mother, Death and Sin,
Played at dice for Ezzelin,
Till Death cried, “I win, I win!”
And Sin cursed to lose the wager,
But Death promised, to assuage her,
That he would petition for
Her to be made Vice-Emperor,
When the destined years were o’er,
Over all between the Po
And the eastern Alpine snow,
Under the mighty Austrian.
She smiled so as Sin only can,
And since that time, ay, long before,
Both have ruled from shore to shore,—
That incestuous pair, who follow
Tyrants as the sun the swallow,
As Repentance follows Crime,
And as changes follow Time.

In thine halls the lamp of learning,
Padua, now no more is burning;
Like a meteor, whose wild way
Is lost over the grave of day,
It gleams betrayed and to betray:
Once remotest nations came
To adore that sacred flame,
When it lit not many a hearth
On this cold and gloomy earth:
Now new fires from antique light
Spring beneath the wide world’s might;
But their spark lies dead in thee,
Trampled out by Tyranny.
As the Norway woodman quells,
In the depth of piny dells,
One light flame among the brakes,
While the boundless forest shakes,
And its mighty trunks are torn
By the fire thus lowly born:
The spark beneath his feet is dead,
He starts to see the flames it fed
Howling through the darkened sky
With a myriad tongues victoriously,
And sinks down in fear: so thou,
O Tyranny, beholdest now
Light around thee, and thou hearest
The loud flames ascend, and fearest:
Grovel on the earth; ay, hide
In the dust thy purple pride!

Noon descends around me now:
’Tis the noon of autumn’s glow,
When a soft and purple mist
Like a vapourous amethyst,
Or an air-dissolved star
Mingling light and fragrance, far
From the curved horizon’s bound
To the point of Heaven’s profound,
Fills the overflowing sky;
And the plains that silent lie
Underneath the leaves unsodden
Where the infant Frost has trodden
With his morning-winged feet,
Whose bright print is gleaming yet;
And the red and golden vines,
Piercing with their trellised lines
The rough, dark-skirted wilderness;
The dun and bladed grass no less,
Pointing from this hoary tower
In the windless air; the flower
Glimmering at my feet; the line
Of the olive-sandalled Apennine
In the south dimly islanded;
And the Alps, whose snows are spread
High between the clouds and sun;
And of living things each one;
And my spirit which so long
Darkened this swift stream of song,—
Interpenetrated lie
By the glory of the sky:
Be it love, light, harmony,
Odour, or the soul of all
Which from Heaven like dew doth fall,
Or the mind which feeds this verse
Peopling the lone universe.

Noon descends, and after noon
Autumn’s evening meets me soon,
Leading the infantine moon,
And that one star, which to her
Almost seems to minister
Half the crimson light she brings
From the sunset’s radiant springs:
And the soft dreams of the morn
(Which like winged winds had borne
To that silent isle, which lies
Mid remembered agonies,
The frail bark of this lone being)
Pass, to other sufferers fleeing,
And its ancient pilot, Pain,
Sits beside the helm again.

Other flowering isles must be
In the sea of Life and Agony:
Other spirits float and flee
O’er that gulf: even now, perhaps,
On some rock the wild wave wraps,
With folded wings they waiting sit
For my bark, to pilot it
To some calm and blooming cove,
Where for me, and those I love,
May a windless bower be built,
Far from passion, pain, and guilt,
In a dell mid lawny hills,
Which the wild sea-murmur fills,
And soft sunshine, and the sound
Of old forests echoing round,
And the light and smell divine
Of all flowers that breathe and shine:
We may live so happy there,
That the Spirits of the Air,
Envying us, may even entice
To our healing Paradise
The polluting multitude;
But their rage would be subdued
By that clime divine and calm,
And the winds whose wings rain balm
On the uplifted soul, and leaves
Under which the bright sea heaves;
While each breathless interval
In their whisperings musical
The inspired soul supplies
With its own deep melodies;
And the love which heals all strife
Circling, like the breath of life,
All things in that sweet abode
With its own mild brotherhood:
They, not it, would change; and soon
Every sprite beneath the moon
Would repent its envy vain,
And the earth grow young again.

— The End —