May 3, 2010

Of The Resurrection of the Meadow


* * *

In times of ancient Elder, ancient Apple-Thorn,

Ancient May & ancient November,

& forgotten ages all wither’d before,

Times of dreaming when They of Old walk’d without sin,

& th’ tongues of beasts were intelligible to men,

Th’ great & cunning seeds were scatter’d

& won purchase in ev'ry hollow to which men gather’d;

For They of Old could speak to wood or water

& th’ sun & moon traced a living course.

With wood & water & Weird un-split

Tree-mask’d Gods strode among us then;

Fire blazed wi’ open mouth of prophecy,

Serpents coil'd round th’ gleeful wedding-bed,

& feastful hobbs lurk’d in coals of th’ hearth,

They of Old trod th’ deep & forest deep again.

Th’ fire in th’ meadow was a bridge of light

Where Heaven did descend to Earth's delight;

& th’ tribute of flesh & tithe in blood

Was wash’d away in th’ world's blissful flood.

What but baleful turning stars could condemn it so

To hell & fearful plague, th' power then

& th’ wisdom inscrib’d in th' healer's art,

& th’ notch on th’ flying arrow

& th’ charm on th’ swinging scythe-blade

& th’ diviner's clever heart?

Th’ treasure-horde of old is more than mere gold

It is th’ art that constrains th’ rain to speak again

It is th’ art that pries open th’ hidden eyes

It is th’ art that makes bloom th’ rot-dead tree

& leaps th’ Hedge that never dies.

For we men of late walk th’ dying way

& th' world declines to shadow day by day

Th’ sepulchral song is all we pray,

& from towers grim declare it a hymn of bliss.

By th’ green & ebon Tree of Light

In whose branches th’ world is hung a-right,

& th’ ghostly hint of forgotten sights-

We must gamble death to emerge quick again.

Dust & bare is th’ hope of th’ penitent;

& scarce more hope in th’ words of sages:

It is shelter of wisdom & brave blood shall win

Th’ prize of th’ witch'd world, th’ mystic,

Th’ world reborn, th’ feery tree & hill,

Th’ resurrection of th’ meadow, th’ death of sin,

& all foulness be consum’d in th’ just wrath of ages.

So let ride th’ kingly steed of th’ Antler-crown’d Lord

King of th’ pale men, king of th’ slain,

King of th’ brown earth where old treasures lay

King of th’ fresh furrow, king of th’ ancient wood,

King of th’ white horn that calls th’ feery rade.

Let that rage-turn’d-hunt ride forth as before,

To th’ glory of memory & th’ winning of lore.


* * *

Copyright 2010 by Robin Artisson


3 comments:

  1. This is amazing Robin. I particularly loved this part:

    "For They of Old could speak to wood or water
    & th’ sun & moon traced a living course.
    With wood & water & Weird un-split
    Tree-mask’d Gods strode among us then;
    Fire blazed wi’ open mouth of prophecy,
    Serpents coil'd round th’ gleeful wedding-bed,
    & feastful hobbs lurk’d in coals of th’ hearth,
    They of Old trod th’ deep & forest deep again."

    ReplyDelete
  2. Have you been dreaming the same dreams as I? Wandering the woods near my house, I always become drowsy and sleepy and feel oddly as I should burst into song or free-form verse that is simply coming through me. Does that make sense?

    I used to walk along the deer-paths and woods of my grandfather's farm with him in that sweet sparkling country-silence and he would always hum softly, pretty little songs half-sung under his breath, a tall tall man in his button-down shirts or work clothes, silver-white hair shining in the dappled light.

    He always said his mother's family had come to the colonies from around Limerick, long ago and not long ago, really and our ability to fashion rhymes out of a mist-draped morning was in our very bones, although we have lived in this country for over three hundred years...

    Lovely...what is it I almost remember?

    ReplyDelete
  3. There used to be a great website / or maybe it was a blog with this name - 'Of the Ressurection of the Meadow' - a few years ago, and I haven't been able to find it when I searched recently. Was it your website, pray tell?

    ~Caroline.

    ReplyDelete