Thursday, 2 September 2010

Prophetic Rumours

I've said it before and I'll say it again: sestinas are the dickens to write!

This one took me three days. The most difficult part is ideally you should write the final stanza first. Maybe some people write like that, but I just find it impossible. Anyway, I'm not too unhappy with the result, and it is even possible some of you may share that sentiment. So, by all means, feed me back.

The day the universe gave birth to man,
A stranger creature it had never seen,
And Nature then did tremble at the sight;
The earth lay still to kiss his fleshy feet
And heaven'ly hosts arranged in bright array
Did hover humbly just above his head.

The day, the grievous day, man bowed his head
In shame, and found himself less than a man,
Lost, lost from sight then was the former ray
Of glory by which all that could be seen
His spirit did transfigure. T'wards his feet
Was now where was directed all his sight.

Half-blind, self-blinded, salvaged dusk-dim sight
Did see but not perceive, for in his head
Stood now a marred mind, and cold defeat
Th'habitual taste now in the mouth of man.
A taint appeared to tarnish all he'd seen,
His thoughts now in perpetual disarray.

But misplaced blame the eye that's lost its ray
Does place on what it sees when its own sight
Is faulty. No fault lies in what is seen
But in what sees. And foolish is the head
That blames the agonising pain of a man
On hardened earth who walks on broken feet.

Long ages and vast distances the feet
Of man have walked beneath the solar ray,
And weary, weary is the soul of man
And seeking, always seeking is his sight
A half-forgotten image in his head,
The mem'ry of a thing he's never seen.

And shall he e'er behold the thing unseen
Or grasp the thing he seeks? Alas, that feat
Remains beyond the best that's in his head
Or heart, despite the brilliance of their ray,
And all attempts to render to his sight
The object of his longing kill the man.

But He Who made his head shall unforeseen
Soon come to man and wash his weary feet,
The cosmic array all trembling at the sight.

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