2016 02 22
Though stars gaze down at me through humming trees
and flower petals kiss my blushing cheek,
I send my words like fluttering birds on breeze
that rocks my boat on ever-flowing creek.
Each blooming valley, where swift horses fly,
appears like every other in my eyes,
silent woods watching me glide slowly by
while I drink fruit juice and become vast skies.
I open wood box full of gems and gown
and think about pretty girl in my bed
waiting for me to bring her new gold crown
which I wanted to place on her proud head.
I close its lid, then bind it secret tight,
and sigh to forget tall man in my bed
kissing my eager wife in cold moonlight,
and how he howled when I shattered his head.
She clutched my feet when I walked out the door
and assured me she bears my child alone,
but I left her weeping on the lonely floor
and sat by the stream with a heart of stone.
My hollow boat drifts on widening stream
and bears me away on blank shoreless sea
where she laughs at me in strange waking dream
and tears fall as rain now that I am free.
Whelias lays lyre on table by warm hearth
after chanting tune with heart-aching grief
and eats roast lamb while children play in mirth
and Karta writes his vision on frail leaf.
After everyone sleeps in warm starlight,
Whelias lies alone on feather-soft brace,
staring awake at the full moon all night
and dreams about her pretty tear-stained face.
When sun rises bright on fishing-town huts
Karta sees him slouch alone on the shore
so she brings him full plate of pears and nuts
and tells him all she knows of healing lore.
Gazing long in her eyes that sparkle green,
Whelias leans forward and kisses her lips,
then walks at her side in meadow to glean
herbs and bird eggs in baskets on her hips.
Holding her hands under shrouding elm tree,
he pledges, I will bring food to your hearth
if you bear children from no man but me,
for only you can give my soul new birth.
Caressing his cheek with fruit-plucking hand,
she pledges, I will bear children for you
if you guard my hearth and fruit-sprouting land,
for I will be faithful to you, and true.
Sitting together by fountain-filled pool,
Whelias and Karta watch their children play
while she wears gold crown with bright sparkling jewel
and molds elegant grail from river clay.
Whelias hitches wagon to prancing horse
then everyone rides on long winding trail
and joins tribe train that follows river course
to honey festival in sacred vale.
Arriving at ancient Temple of Song,
that sits on high hill where Flower Queen reigns,
they carry gifts and join worshipping throng
who sings sweet hymns while the gleaming sun wanes.
Wild-haired woman wearing old tattered gown
leaps suddenly from crowd, and thrusts sharp spear
in his heart, then snatches her jeweled crown
and howls in rage as shocked crowd parts in fear.
I was waiting for you in home you built
when stranger forced his way into our bed,
but you abandoned me to shameful guilt
so I wandered lost without wine or bread.
Whelias clutches spear that pierces his heart
while Karta cradles him by weeping sea,
and he stares forever at bleeding stars,
then sighs, I am lost now that I am free.