Happy New Year

Of course, I saw the new year in in my customary way: alone, and singing.

Here is what I heard, as live as may be, and unedited:

1 January 2015


Begin as You Mean to Go On

Most candles guttered out slowly; the few that remained past the midnight’s cold tolling sank low.
Only a frail sense of presence reminded my flesh of the reason love’s song loves you so.
Maybe the Moon comes too frozen tonight, the sky clear as ice in a still windless place,
but instantly I can’t recall how I died of remorse, shame, and bad magic. Show a glad face,
the ghost in the shadows that lurk past the door at the back of my mind tells me: Let your love shine.
Nothing’s the matter with you or with me, and that’s why it’s difficult. Maybe I pine
for something that casts its high shadow, so gentle and fragrant, across my strange, long-casting own,
but till I can know it forever, it just wants to lie in a cold place and dream all alone
of the gathering breath that will soon force its moment. Wakening has to continue, once sleep
has fled with its pale apparitions. Oh woeful astonishment, here’s where we cannot help keep
our secrets inside an embroidered enclosure so delicate, aye the first love-breath will rend
its lightly-plied feathers apart as if they meant to fail. What will next you, dear unweaver, send?
Ghost of a breath as it lightly draws forward, tangled threads lay themselves lightly and long
across the most beautiful bed carved of hardwood and warped only once, by the eeriest song
that now plies your hearing with echoes of where we came first to the knowing that this is the fine
ceremonial blanket about to be woven between us at last, with god’s oldest design
the winding that overlays every cast answer, each small little crossing of vision and nerve.
Meet me awake in the morning, much changed between now and the moment all love songs deserve,
much strengthened by madness allayed, and by dread sorrow changed out of all recognition: You knew
the portent fast-rushing toward you; you knew you would rise amid song amid new morning’s dew;
you knew who I was, and the instant you felt me, the weather beyond the first ocean grew wild.
Aye, we are terrible seers ourselves, yet the tides of our eyes have borne song a new child.
Far, far apart, rise the waves of first hearing. Nearer they come, yet we feel more alone
than ever before. Pain so woeful, yet healing, tell me we’re come to where flesh rejoins bone.


About J

formal verse poetry and commentary at rainharp.com
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