Wednesday, October 24, 2012

When Children Raved

When children raved in warrior’s paint
and danced like David sans restraint
 – when poets sailed from distant shores
 – when lambs lay down to lions’ roars
 – when old wounds healed and were no more
 – when sinners turned at once to saints,
and hearts grew strong by growing faint  –

In some miracle hour when the moon was mad,
hence insane men were growing sane,
I saw a sight sublime, a dream had:
A fairy queen danced forth ‘cross a stormy plain
upon a single drop of summer rain,
and stood before me with a curtsy and a smile.
Her form was beauty flawless: beauty, without guile.

She stood there like a gift, defying explanation.
Her skin was lily like, and dyed with pink carnations.
Her eyes were colored oceans 
with depths for miles, and miles:
eyes soft kissed by gentle winds:
misty, and mysteriously mild.

With delight I gazed on she, like some astonished child.
With curiosity she answered, at first and for awhile:
as if I were a creature, new, and strange, and wild;
as if I were a riddle, sent forth to beguile.
At last, her face flushed red with recognition:
'midst curious conjecture, she made her decision 
and tossed her hair in a manner kind and coy:
“If I am a girl,” she said with startled joy,
and held me like a vision,
“then you must be a boy.”

Of men, I saw her first, at last, and glad;
by being seen her beauty only gained.
And gladly to be seen she was, she is, remains.
I recall she sang for joy in green and blue refrains
a song of love like love like chains.
She sang old words while new worlds waned;
her song her secret kept, unkept; I keep it still.
Her song is mine is hers is ours to sing until 
until; for forever; unto ever, upon the everlasting hills.

I saw her then in an hour fast.
I saw her n’er again, and n’er will. Alas!
But that one hour sinks forever
like sands in an eternal hour glass.
The time shall come at last
when even time shall be no more --
but never shall that hour pass.

It was an hour only, yes –
not an hour too little, too late,
but much too much, too soon
-- of all hours best.
It was an hour of minutes great;
an hour thirsty that ever sates:
not an hour empty, but full to fill.
It was like – it was like –
like angel’s moonshine thrice distilled:
aye, a draft not made for mortal men
(lesser men it might have killed).
I drank it then in fear, and now and then,
I remember the place where dreams begin,
and fairies dance wild at will...
and I drink. Unto this day, I drink it still.

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