Saturday, December 5, 2015

Lux Obscura

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

A light unseen, an infinite weight,
pressing down, with power to raise
these mud-eyes from the tangled haze
towards a glorious and hidden gate.

But where can I turn
under light of day
that will not be now
a turning away?

For the vast world now appears spread out
like thin marmalade on mildewed toast,
like foul waves breaking on a broken coast,
forever roaring and tumbling about.

While in great silence the light blooms above
bringing deep darkness to drown my sight,
a resplendent night-cloud at noontide height,
concealing an unspeakable and boundless love.

And where can I turn
under light of day
that will not be now
a turning away?

Monday, May 25, 2015

Awaiting Tomorrow

[From: “The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"] 

If in your dreams you see me wandering
through ripe wheatfields, pensive, pondering,
alone and adrift upon an ocean of grain
golden and billowing under a threat of rain,
then sing out to me from your upstairs window,
intone a bright song while the sea-zephyrs blow,
that my thoughts in the turbulent twilight air
will be mingled with a music resplendent and fair
and so ascend arrayed with both gladness and sorrow
through clouds to the starlight awaiting tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

A beautiful sadness

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

A beautiful sadness, a sorrowful joy,
there are no suitable words to employ
for rightly describing this looming desire,
this living catastrophe of bright gentle fire
which blazes in darkness and thick quietude
and thunders in silence and content solitude,
with a wordless wisdom from beginning to end
unseen yet beautiful, all sorrows to mend.

Monday, May 4, 2015

How soundlessly the sunlight falls

[From: "The Life of Saint Robert Southwell, Priest and Martyr"]

How soundlessly the sunlight falls
upon the wide world after rain,
unmeasured night and fevered pain,
dispelling gloom in woodland halls.
Dewdrops cling to eyelash wings,
and eyes once more see many things.

But the objects underneath the sky,
so dear before, appear quite strange,
all stricken with some peculiar change -
as silent as death they pass me by.
The things of earth, I must confess,
now seem empty and meaningless.

But a living call is on the wind,
a breath requesting willing price,
for many souls, a sacrifice,
as new leaves shake and branches bend.
A courage swells for what may come,
be it blade or noose of martyrdom.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

The wind is fierce

[From: “The Last Journal of Gwyllyn”]

The wind is fierce in my thoughts today
sifting the thistles and tangled weeds,
scattering dry leaves and maple seeds,
and sweeping withered flowers away.

The air is fragrant with unseen rose,
with marigold, alyssum, and juniper,
honeysuckle, phlox, and lavender,
mingling as the morning glows.

Light is bright on the tender frond
and dew is lingering in the sun;
some new splendor has begun
with fierce wind blowing from beyond.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

A fragrant minstrelsy

The starlight pierced the soundless sky
before the sun laid down its head,
beyond the hillocks burning red
with bands of small birds passing by.

A fragrant minstrelsy was hung
on winds blown from a distant land
where turquoise waves sift diamond sand,
where all is fair and ever-young.

Where apple-blossoms in the sun
are stirred by every gentle breeze,
by music in the blooming trees,
by ancient arias just begun.

And with the sun now gone to sleep
and dreaming of another day,
the world in shadow fades away
as stars their quiet vigils keep.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The little wind-up girl

The little wind-up girl with a broken spring
sits looking down upon everything
from her shantytown-shelf of shadow and dust,
dreaming her wistful dreams of rust.

She smiles quite sweetly as she dreams,
but she always smiles, or so it seems.
She rattles inside when she is shaken,
but none shake now; she is quite forsaken.

The decay of time her face defiles,
and still she smiles and smiles and smiles.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

There shines a fair road

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

Subtle yet certain, there shines a fair road,
a gossamer thread, a thin golden hair,
weaving its way up through branches and stars
and bidding me to follow - and yet do I dare?

For once on that way, the things of the earth
would be drained of their vibrant color and taste;
and what would life be in such a strange world,
in such an insipid and grey-muted waste?

But behold! what a blessëd and glittering light
shakes down the filament from its farthest end,
from beyond the splendors of this fading realm,
from the fount on which all splendors depend!

And taking a step onto this fairest of roads,
I find that the footing is solid and secure;
and so, with the beckoning light in my eyes,
I run to it headlong, the way being sure!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Drawing Near

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

Between the grinding gears of life,
in the very midst of strife,
there comes a sense of quiet here,
drawing drawing drawing near.

The blinding brightness of the day
begins to dim and fade away;
a darkness comes, bereft of fear,
drawing drawing drawing near.

A shadow-silhouette is seen,
eclipsing every earthly sheen;
enduring love and peace appear,
drawing drawing drawing near.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Anna-Maria

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

Never was Anna-Maria more beautiful
than when she gazed on the twilight sea,
in the spring of her life; when a lonely gull
cried aloft in the tumbling wind; when she,
heedless of gusts in her unfettered hair,
let saltwater fall from her blue eyes there.

The waves, each draped with a white wedding veil,
bowed low as they came in procession ashore,
and hushed their fair voices near a maiden so pale,
so beautiful and wistful, so pitiful and poor.
The golden sands shifted beneath her bare feet,
and stars began blooming, the nightfall to greet.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Awakening

[From: "The Lost Writings of C. James Gwyllyn"]

Awakening, as if from death,
drawing in a full soft breath;
arising from the coffin-bed,
knowing I am not yet dead.
Light is on the shaking leaf
and in my eyes. The tender grief
grows mellow in the morning hour,
becomes a kind of joy, a flower
blooming in the hopeful spring,
glad of life, of everything.
Drops of rain fall in the sun,
glittering, golden, every one.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

A Lovely Muse

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

Melancholy is a lovely muse,
and a welcome houseguest after all;
I will hearken to her tender call,
her visits I will not refuse.

A twilight wind through many leaves
precedes her knocking at the door,
like gentle waves upon the shore
while the ocean under moonlight heaves.

A maiden young, but growing old,
with a wistful smile, but shining bright;
her grey eyes brim with glad starlight
glimmering through the quiet cold.

She stirs the woodland of my mind
with many fair and whispered words;
I hear the songs of many birds,
for a time I leave the world behind.

And from these visits she makes to me,
I have learned that it is not so bad,
to be profoundly happy, yet a little sad,
and to live life thus, contentedly.

She has made me see the world anew,
with potent splendors under light of day,
and at the same time watch them fade away,
unhindered by all we could say or do.

She has taught me to listen to the song
that these things sing before they go,
something they would have us know,
that Here you will not tarry long...

...your yearnings pull you far away
from this dark world; what here you love
will never last; O look above
where night will soon be endless Day!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Fratello

[From: "The Lost Writings of C. James Gwyllyn"]

I would bring her fair dreams in waking life,
and smooth her white and furled brow
in every discouragement and strife,
her deepest nights with stars endow.

But her world pirouettes in distant space,
en pointe above these stranger-eyes,
resplendent, arrayed with light and grace,
a noon-sun in these fading skies.

And I, a fratello she never has met,
a comrade fated to be unknown,
behold in wonder the red sunset,
having truly loved, and loved alone.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Windowpane

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

I behold the world from far away,
as through a window; the light of day,
subdued behind a mountain chain,
can scarcely pierce the windowpane.

The milky heavens, drained of gold,
at times send raindrops, fierce and cold;
the wind speaks to the sleeping trees
of distant winter tragedies.

A river of starlings hurries past
on some grand quest; they briefly cast
their fluttering shadows on the ground,
then pass away without a sound.

Night is creeping across the grass,
the world slips further from the glass;
a candle is lit within the room
against the swiftly gathering gloom.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Awaiting Sleep

The lights and colors flutter past
her closed eyelids; the phantoms last
some moments in the darkness after
a stillness falls; then voices, laughter
within the house, yet far away,
ripple upon the edge of grey;
the oaks outside the window grow
a little taller; the moon is low
and shining fair; the sky is deep
above the child awaiting sleep.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Floating

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

Floating out into the ocean sky,
the golden blue, the open eye
beholding all things on the earth,
ascribing to each but little worth.

A great and glittering teardrop there,
suspended in darkness, shining fair,
with the joys and griefs of everyone
falling and falling around the sun.

With blending hues and brittle lights,
with shifting clouds upon the heights,
the furious clamorings of the day
serenely burn, then fade away.

Monday, January 19, 2015

The day is an epoch

Over behind the behemoth high-rise,
a dumpster is heaped, attracting flies;
their jade backs glint under blazing skies
while the sun looks on with complacent eyes.

The day is an epoch; the bright humming city
is a wild and unfathomed depth of infinity,
where great planets sail on the deep churning sea
pushed onward by winds blowing mighty and free.

But the epoch is ending, the long shadows fall;
the slumber of slumbers sends out its soft call;
the sated flies cling to the crust of the wall
and observe the white moon as it shines over all.

Friday, January 2, 2015

A hidden holy light

[From: "The Last Journal of Gwyllyn"]

When the voice of the world, with its empty muttering,
grows mute; when in the sunlight I begin shuddering
from a curious fever; when all the things that I love
compel me to be quiet and stare absently above;
not at clouds, or the sun, or the wide void of blue,
but at nothing, yet somehow at everything too;
not thinking one thought, not speaking one word,
with just the silence behind all things being heard;
where peace unassailable, and joy clear and bright,
with love shine forever in a hidden holy light.