The Yeatsian

Poetry & Lyricism "A line will take us hours maybe; Yet if it does not seem a moment's thought, Our stitching and unstitching has been naught." WB Yeats "Adam's Curse"

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Location: at the Singer's Microphone, United States

I'm in my second marriage to a wonderful woman, my beautiful wife! I thank God everyday He brought her to me! "Restore us, O God of hosts: Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved!" PSALM 80

Friday, January 20, 2006

Dawn in the Evening

With a pizza in the plaza dawn began,
Culminating long past midnight
With tea beneath the pines and the stars,
And as the sun rose in our hearts,
Music swelled and rose in our blood,
Beckoning us to a new promontory,
A golden fire, a vision resplendent,
Like the dancers that spun around us,
Weaving shreds of life into light.

A human soul is a fragile god,
Guided by a destiny of its own invention.
My own soul, aching for its counterpart,
Had wandered aimless, desolate, forlorn
Among shapeless crowds of human shadows.
Loss seemed the natural state,
The pain of loneliness the first sense.
In a slumber had the will lain,
Dormant under the pressure of a memory,
A memory so sweet and refined that a starling
Would blush at such perfection.
For month upon empty month
Have I not come home
To an empty flat and an empty bed
Without a lover's arms to warm me,
Without even the indifferent arms
Of a wife to act the pretense of a love?

The jealous sun partook of our power,
The ecstatic power of mad dancers,
With a massive transfusion of heat and light,
As the midday revival pulsed with rhythms,
Burgeoned with melodies, and gushed with harmonies,
Seizing, fusing musicians and dancers
Into one reckless, indomitable one.
It was a frenzy that smashed mere limits,
An American chaos of passion and purity,
A resurrection through music to light,
A coupling with the darkness of feeling and fury,
And out of the one there rose a voice
Persuasive unto itself, wild, enchanted,
A voice that sang of the moment as holy
As silence, a miracle of pure affirmation,
And the voice burst within the hearts
Of the dancers and all at once they knew.

The sweat of the dancers precipitated a cloud,
A shadow washed over the crowd,
And the voice became an echo receeding through the hills,
As I found that I had crossed to beyond.
Ah, sweet silent release.
And from that moment the darkness of the night
Ceased to oppress, as a figure divine
Appeared from out of the cool night.
She danced, we danced, like rolling waves,
Like savage beasts, like gods immortal.
And the moment of speech came upon us
Like an embrace without a cause.

At the Banquet Plato's sages spoke
Of desire and origins, the cleft in our being,
And the pursuit of our counter-souls,
High theme of Romance and the quest
For wholeness, fulfillment, and the gold of the soul,
A guitar will tempt you to the edge of the cliff,
A dance will sweep you up and away,
But a woman's body will take you down
To the depth of the mystery that haunts your nights
And divides your days into sadness and pursuit.
At the threshold you stand, aching and longing,
As love and power coalesce
To an image felt more than seen or heard,
And a veil slips from the face of the moon.

The differences and the distances
That constitute this fallen state
Return to plague me, and give me joy,
And the memory of the festival sweetly fades
Into the common light of struggle and sorrow,
And yet I pray that this revival might linger
Like a kiss, like a touch, like a kind word,
To renew these eyes, to empower this voice,
That I might dwell in the illusion of immortality,
Embracing bitterness as equal to joy,
And turning sadness into a golden lamp
To guide my slow descent to mother earth.

September, 1993