Tag Archive: poem


 

Phoenix_detail_from_Aberdeen_Bestiary

 

Out of the ashes of the end

 

Rises the Phoenix.

 

Who is this Phoenix

 

Who flies up through flashes

 

Of burning embers,

 

Who extends

 

Her wings

 

From the horizon

 

To the wind-streaked high plateau,

 

This one who ever dies,

 

Yet flies

 

Again

 

With golden beak

 

And brown-laked eyes

 

That seek

 

Only the stories, true and raven-wandering?

 

Mountain air gleams;

 

Glittering stars talk

 

And walk,

 

And wend their way

 

Along the hidden crannies of the skies

 

And know

 

Where eagles slip through time’s illusion,

 

Eagles who remember every eon

 

And recall the wisdom

 

Of the glad-winged Hamsa

 

Who hears

 

Even now the dawn-invoking, distant drums

 

Of long-gone dreams.

 

After the flames of desecrated towns,

 

Of strange, fossilized soils,

 

After the blanched wicks

 

Of all the candles have been snuffed,

 

And volcanic plumes fluffed

 

In sobering winds,

 

After the great ending,

 

The air clears

 

Of dim, smoking whiffs.

 

Then Adi Sesha of the thousand, bright-singing

 

Emerald crowns,

 

Older than many worlds before,

 

Older than the trees of time, ancient,

 

Floats again

 

On the timeless mist

 

Of eternity,

 

Lifting on his winding coils

 

The form of Narayana

 

Who slumbers,

 

Resting.

 

Then the Phoenix

 

Rises through the amethyst

 

Height,

 

Over the land where lilies still grow

 

In the backwaters

 

Not far from the rainbowed sea,

 

In the rain,

 

In the truth where only

 

The innocent curlews nesting

 

Play by the rocky shore

 

On a moon-bent day

 

There the waves crash, exuberant,

 

Against the granite cliffs.

 

 

©Sharon St Joan, 2018

 

Illustration: Phoenix detail from Aberdeen Bestiary, Public Domain, Wikipedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dreamstime_xs_49418853

 

To the one who lived among the hills,

 

Unseen,

 

Now your voice has become an echo

 

In the distant mist.

 

You have gone

 

to other worlds on star-bright

 

Wings of snow,

 

To that far mountain

 

You call home, where white-

 

Throated swifts soar

 

In the shifting clouds,

 

Where silver chimes

 

Ring

 

In the rain-cloaked ravine

 

And deer nibble

 

In the frost-green

 

Stillness,

 

Where crowds

 

Of petals

 

Fall

 

From the nagalingam tree

 

In ever-present peace,

 

And the wind brings

 

Gales of blessings from across the wandering sea,

 

Where geese

 

Climb the sunlit stairway of the morning,

 

And the langur monkey

 

Sings lullabies to her children

 

In the foothills

 

Of times beyond times,

 

Where the Gods of the forest

 

Listen

 

In the dawn

 

To leaf-told tales

 

Of nevermore

 

And long before.

 

© Sharon St Joan, April, 2017

 

Photo: © Ronnachai Limpakdeesavasd | Dreamstime.com

 

 

dan-ross-dreamstime_xs_80456482

 

Did you ever wander

 

Among the winking

 

Cobwebbed nooks

 

Of times gone by,

 

Among the darkened, wind-shifting streets,

 

Or else leaf through

 

Broken backed and faded books

 

On the forgotten shelf?

 

Or peer at a copper plate

 

Of unremembered scripts

 

Of ancient deeds

 

And hero tales long left

 

Unsung,

 

Or drift among those lost stone gods,

 

Their noses knocked asunder

 

By mortar fire

 

In some unmentionable war,

 

Or, through rain that falls in opalescent sheets,

 

Seek out temples entrenched under

 

The thick jungled trunks of time, of seeding pods, and twilit weeds,

 

Or visit deep in crypts

 

Where rest the tales, in a lost urn,

 

Of eons flown,

 

Of higher, rainbowed hallways in the sky

 

Where gods and beings once had shone

 

When trees were worshipped,

 

As they ought to be,

 

When holy rocks

 

And elf

 

And giant

 

Roamed among the crowds

 

Of shimmering lilies in the mist,

 

Where deer run free

 

And hummingbirds hover

 

In the half-lit glimmer of the dancing dawn

 

On those wildflowered ilses – still untouched, radiant –

 

Or have you

 

Heard coursing hooves ringing

 

Through the starbright forest

 

Of a green-mossed eternity,

 

And did you ever gasp

 

To glance back

 

At the paltry present time that seemed

 

So suddenly all awry,

 

So shorn of grace?

 

Look now – a poor cut-out,

 

A false façade,

 

A parody concocted of every chemical,

 

Torn metal,

 

And toxic dust,

 

A humdrum bar-coded day,

 

Bereft of meaning,

 

Meant to squander,

 

And nights of mechanical terror

 

That grate

 

Against the soul,

 

Though all quite scientific and practical,

 

Of course.

 

Did you ever find the present world a little lacking?

 

Cars chrome-bright, junkyards of rust,

 

Oil wells bubbling

 

And spewing out the oddest orange river,

 

Computer graphics jingling a frantic caper,

 

Medical mirages, ill-inducing potion and pill?

 

War-cratered skeletons

 

Of cities loom at the edge of the shattered rim,

 

Lies and lies and weary doom

 

And here comes death – grim and dreary –

 

Tripping after.

 

A clanking alleyway

 

Where the faltering march

 

Of the bedraggled lout,

 

The troll,

 

Plunges on and on

 

Into the dank and danker

 

Cellars of caustic confusion

 

(Where now the shack

 

On the hill

 

That slipped

 

Into the mist

 

Where strangers from a far star

 

Sought shelter?)

 

Did you ever watch that oft-trod stairway

 

From the first magic light of stars, fall

 

Down, down into the iron pits of delusion,

 

Of nowhere at all,

 

Where darkness dwells and nothing more?

 

And did you ever wonder

 

When will the thunderclouds gather again

 

And the wind fiercely roar,

 

Dragon-winged in snow

 

And sleet,

 

Spilling rain

 

Across the open plain

 

Like the glad-running,

 

Unshod

 

Feet

 

Of the wild horse

 

That once gleamed

 

In the sun,

 

Rain clouds like the enduring face

 

Of an early people

 

Brave, eagle-hearted,

 

Who will walk again

 

To the quickening drum of wisdom?

 

Now will the improbable one

 

Who speaks with unforked tongue

 

Return,

 

Followed by those who shake the sleep from their eyes

 

In the wan,

 

Uncharted

 

Light of a new

 

Day?

 

When

 

Will the wind blow

 

A wind to make way

 

For the gods of yesteryear

 

To unclasp

 

The hold

 

On the windowed arch,

 

On those most ancient rocks

 

That climb like towers

 

To the sky,

 

Who bring back the innocent ones,

 

The cottontail, the whimsical sage grouse, the fox,

 

The juniper stand,

 

The pinions,

 

The cry

 

Of the killdeer,

 

The wild flowers,

 

And the coyote who dances in the gentle moonlight,

 

Her song

 

Unheard

 

So long

 

Yet ever remembered,

 

Bright

 

In the mystic night,

 

So old, and gone

 

And yet to rise again

 

When the winds call

 

Alone on the stone

 

And grass-blown land?

 

 

Written in October, 2015

 

© Sharon St Joan, 2017

 

Photo: © Dan Ross / Dreamstime.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

elisa-bistocchi-dreamstime_xs_58504324

 

When the great ones return

 

Carrying magic in their wings

 

Then only the white teeth

 

Of the concrete kings

 

Will glimmer

 

In the pool of death.

 

Nothing else will sleep

 

On the stone,

 

No one slain,

 

But only

 

The echo of lies,

 

The din of malice,

 

Shed and gone,

 

When the green waves rise,

 

Bearing the emerald throne,

 

The majesty of the deep

 

Will deliver

 

Those long forgotten

 

Hooves of the innocent

 

To ride

 

Again on the mountain height,

 

Spirits of the living tide,

 

The throat of the lion of wisdom

 

Will rumble anew,

 

The rain

 

Of Indra will crash from

 

The chariot of thunder,

 

When

 

The forests reawaken to reclaim the earth,

 

Nothing will be lost then,

 

Only the masks of terror,

 

Only the mirrors of untruth,

 

When wolves dance on the hillside,

 

And tigers growl

 

In the blue

 

Dark,

 

With bright eyes that burn

 

Along the holy way

 

Of the night,

 

When spirits return

 

In the white magic of winter,

 

Triumphant,

 

On the howl

 

Of the winds of joy, the songs of sunrise,

 

In the victory of the horses of fire and snow

 

That break

 

Unstoppable, across the broad plain.

 

A storm to leave in its wake

 

Only the stillness

 

Of the lily of eternity

 

Waving in the sunlit rain,

 

For the truly living do not die, they say,

 

But only the walking, dissonant

 

Dead,

 

Only the soulless

 

Patterns of dismay.

 

Only the clouds ashen,

 

When the cosmic, winged mother

 

Gathers the wanderlings,

 

The flocks

 

Of garbled geese

 

And their errant goslings,

 

Among the trees of twisted juniper

 

And the radiant

 

Rocks,

 

Bundling all her children,

 

Into her many-storied home of peace

 

By the green-banked river

 

In the haunting bells of dawn.

 

 

© Sharon St Joan, 2017

 

Photo: © Elisa Bistocchi / Dreamstime

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(To the people of Little Willow)

sh-photo-cottonwoods-at-zions

A poem by Raven Chiong

 

There’s something to be said…

Go, step into the long lost well of sacred silence. With courage, dive, free and deep into Oceans of open space, listen to your own Voice, follow your own drum.

There’s something to be said…

above the din of “progress”, above the cacophony of Other.

Dry Grasses beckon, Ancient Canyons echo with no syllable or rhyme:

Disconnect, unplug, return to Earth Mother, come Home, weary traveler, to your Self.

Walk.

Slow.

Sit.

Stay.  

Attune to the Place where symphony of Cottonwoods meets sweet silence of Sage, where Rocks speak, Rivers sing, and Shooting Stars have Voices.

There’s something to be said…

Who’s resonating?

Who’s calling?

There’s something to be said…

Are you listening?

Can you hear?

There’s something to be said…

Only the Dreamer, Awake, can say.

 

 August 11, 2011

 

Photo:  Sharon St Joan / Young cottonwoods at Zion National Park

 

Mgkuijpers:dreamstime_s_38378907

 

You who are the wisdom

 

And the treasure – on the hill where bells peal

 

Life and death,

 

Death and life,

 

Birth, rebirth,

 

Or freedom

 

From the ever-grinding wheel

 

Of strife.

 

Gentle,

 

Brave,

 

It is you who stay,

 

Who live deep in the dens of the earth,

 

In the rain-dark soil,

 

Breath

 

Of all being,

 

You who stay

 

When all has left

 

Fled far on the crane-white wings that shimmer,

 

And you too who encircle the stars and the moon,

 

You who glimmer

 

Like the lily,

 

Soul bereft

 

That hisses of the ending soon.

 

You flow

 

Coil upon blue-hued coil,

 

Your hooded heads sway,

 

You know all

 

And yet nothing,

 

You sing the call

 

Of the lakes of eternity

 

On the silver wave

 

In the night of falling snow

 

And the peace of the dawn-pale petal.

 

Shanti. Shanti. Shanti.

 

© Sharon St Joan, 2016

 

Photo: © Mgkuijpers | Dreamstime.com / Arabian cobra

 

 

 

 

 

 

Magic bird

DSC02206

By Sharon St Joan

 

Magic bird of flames

 

And waterfalls,

 

Where now have you gone?

 

Fled,

 

Into the mists

 

Of the night

 

Into the deep, green forests,

 

From where you first arose,

 

Lingering,

 

Among the kanchi trees

 

In the winds that only the starlight

 

Sees

 

The echo

 

Of your song calls

 

Among the leaves radiant

 

Until

 

Even when the echo falls silent,

 

Your feathers green and red

 

Glimmer still

 

In the blueness

 

Of dawn,

 

Kamakshi, mystery known by many names,

 

Mother of the darkness,

 

And the light,

 

Where have you gone?

 

Into the farthest woods of being

 

Where none can ever follow.

 

Now only the graceful deer stand alone

 

In the meadow

 

Where their toes

 

Shone

 

Silver in the grass singing,

 

Singing.

 

 

Written March 11, 2016

 

Photo: Sharon St Joan

 

© 2016, Sharon St Joan

Hamsa

 

Hamsa

 

Hamsa, magical one,

 

Mystic bird,

 

Eyes of gold fire,

 

You rode upon the wave,

 

The cosmic courses

 

Of ancient, shining times;

 

You walked amid the owl-sung light

 

Of the fairy tree,

 

By the tall, moon-shifting

 

Hill,

 

You saw the walls of shimmering stone –

 

The sacred lamp-lit cave,

 

Where the ancient, bent ones still

 

Lingered ever on,

 

Their gods too old to be remembered,

 

Times of other worlds and climes,

 

When the air sang in a haze

 

Of sparkle flown

 

Like dragonfly wings that whirred,

 

Translucent.

 

You recall the bright winters of yore,

 

So long before

 

The ashen day when

 

The armies of the stalking skeleton

 

Broke onto the red field,

 

Sweeping all with their dire

 

Iron gaze,

 

Where now the star-cast

 

Bell that pealed

 

From the green mountain?

 

Hamsa, you are the swift-unfolding wings of light,

 

The tales softly-singing,

 

The warm face of the sun

 

Hamsa, where have you gone,

 

To what far, dawn-

 

Lit land?

 

And when will you return again,

 

Radiant, with fast,

 

White-

 

Maned horses,

 

Exultant,

 

As the rose of spring,

 

On the glad-rushing winds of eternity?

 

© 2014, Sharon St Joan

 

Photo: Marek Szczepanek / Wikimedia Commons / This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.  

Darkness

 

Darknessoct182013

 

Now is the darkness

 

When the black moon

 

Rests

 

On the waterway,

 

In the windless,

 

Silent shadows

 

Of the invincible heron.

 

There is no one

 

Else, nothing,

 

Only the emptiness

 

Of time gone into the lost

 

And gray-

 

Mossed

 

Forests,

 

And of eternity not yet risen.

 

In the morning

 

Light, soon

 

Ring

 

The echoes

 

Of stray

 

Mists.

 

©Sharon St Joan, October 18, 2013

 

Photo:  © Tony Wilson | Dreamstime.com

Bighorn_lamb_Alberta, resized

 

Within the rose

The mystic rose

Rises the fragrance of only the misted

Echoes

Of wind and rainbows.

There, there is no death, blank-faced

And cold, but only the blue

Wings of the sky.

No songs of shadows

But only those

Lilting, cloud-laced

Songs the moon

Might hum

While walking, clad in her glad gown

Beside the riverbank.

No scarecrow of injustice, twisted

Bent

But only the iridescent

Eye

Of the mountain sheep

Dancing with her lamb

Among the high

Summer snows.

Within the rose

Happen only the going forth in flight

And the returning to

The Great Soul of the Night

Who will ever keep

Dream and event

Beginning

And ending

In her shining circled hands of starlight

Within the mystic rose.

 

© Sharon St Joan

Written around 1993

 

Photo: Philipp Haupt from Zug, Switzerland / Wikimedia Commons / This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. / Bighorn lamb in Alberta, Canada