The white moths of time

© Darius Baužysdreamstime     _xs_21909081


The white moths of time listen

To the silken threads of the moon.

Perhaps it is time, not the world,

That needs to end soon,

Where the mists of Scotland


There is magic.

Where did Agni go when he left?

He fled far,

Across the hills,

Where, no one could tell,

And left the land bereft.

But he did not truly go,

And the moonlight


On the whole lake,

Dreamed in snow.

No one has gone, at all

Only the gray wraith of doom

Who cursed the morning

From the chill tomb.

No one has left.

The rain still

Drifts on the hill.

The eye

Of the seagull recalls

The face

Of sunshine, and the insistent roar

Of the seas that sing

On the shore,

Where the pipes of daybreak


The sky.

Black cows stood

In the peace of the meadow,

While the calf trips gaily

Through the daffodils.

Plants grow  —

Green, archaic fern.

The calico cat leaps into the valley of tulips.

The frog calls

The rain.

The horse of white mane

Is the moon who wanders.

The raven is the night,


Of the daughters

Of Shani,

Born of the cosmic

Egg, the feathers of the yew,

The elbows of the eon.

Owls live in the stones too,

And Europe’s


The rags of clouds, of cloth unfurled,

Fly, to where who can tell?

The ship slips

A silver oar

Into the river where sails the incarnate trout

Of golden gill.

By what temple did you used to stand,

With your bowl of wood?

Who lit the lamps for you

When the moon went out

And time fell?

Would the rain come again?

Broken branches

On the Great War’s trenches,

The snow was too heavy.

The dancing of branches,

The singing of the star,

Time to go west,

Fleet deer of spring,

Gone with the white-crowned sparrow.

In whose soul does the lily dwell?

Is the deer the eternal grace

Of the forest?


© Sharon St Joan, February, 2014 

Photo: © Darius Baužys /




One thought on “The white moths of time

  1. Lovely poem – thanks! There’s quite a story behind the Yucca Moth, as well. I read about it a couple of years ago – I believe I’m correct in thinking it’s the only pollinator of the Joshua Tree, which is one of those plants that has suffered from loss of the megafauna that used to be in North America.

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