Of Night and Old Legends
Two Haiku and a Sestina
First are two haiku: one written in the late dusk and one written much later still.
Like a child’s scissors
the black mountains are cut out
by twilight’s edges
flicker in and out the stars
long after midnight
And I am adding this, my first attempt at writing a sestina, an attempt inspired by a comment from Kristen at Pintail Poetry. I am dubious about the value of posting this one, as I feel it to be muddled and mangled, to say the least. But as I have worked it and reworked it this past week, I’m certain it is now well past the point of any real improvement, so it is either post it or not… and here it is… Hopefully future attempts will benefit from this one!
Sestina Of Old Legends
The dragons, that they told the tales of once
In days of long ago–times have been gone so long
That we may trace them as a dreamer traces tales
That once he dreamt in yet another dream;
Our memories lie hidden in a cave
Of time, and it is ours to search her treasures.
Throughout the ages we have heaped up treasures;
In visions of our hearts we held them once
And laid them fast away within a cave
Of silent wonder, in a cave of long
Desire; and there we let our silence dream
Until the memories of bards spake tales.
The gold and gems of myth engendered tales
Of courage in the seeking of these treasures–
The bards will sing of love and grief, of dreams
That brought these legends to our telling once
And once again though eons changed: the long
And weary days we’ve dwelt beyond that cave
Where dreams were hid; for in that very cave
Were things whereof no sage could count the tale,
No king could claim those gems belong
Only to him; for there are kept the treasures
That belong to all: desires that once
We dared to trust, though in a silent dream.
But in the telling of that ageless dream
There ever comes unto the hidden cave
A foe as terrible as fire, at once
An enemy, a guard, this thing of tales
As golden and as bright as all the treasures
Lost behind his sordid greed too long.
Day after day and night by night we long
For jewels kept in memory by a dream;
Thus heroes will fight dragons for those treasures
Though life be short. The gold sought in a cave
Is not the stuff of which the bards tell tales;
He slays his foe, sheaths sword, and ponders once.
Where lie the treasures that the bards sang long,
When heroes once sought courage in that dream
And hope within that cave? No gem tells tales.
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