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~ By Courtesy of Others ~


Song of Three Nights

I was screaming, and the scream filled all the air and then froze
And in its frozen time I lay slit open
Watching myself from within myself
And around me, within me, beyond me
She was
Knotting, sewing, staring, singing
Her form slipped and twisted in my awareness
Sometimes she was a young girl kicking up rainbows from bright water
Sometimes she swam with the otter and her hair filled with gold
Sometimes she was the slow breath within a rock
Always she was older than time
And her eyes never blinked or changed
Fierceness without anger
Determination without will
She wove in me
And into her weaving she sang spells
"I teach you nothing
All is within you
I show you your shape
Nothing more
Do you dare to know your own shape?
Do you dare to sing your own song?
Do you dare to live?"
My answer was a ripple under my opened skin
A sob in my scream
She went on.

"One brings freedom
Flight - ferocious life.
When it flares in you
You will transcend fear
Its flame is the light by which you see
You and no one else.
"Two is a howl from the ooze
Sap you suck up from your roots
Cool, fluent, blue,
It drags back, settles into lagoons,
Drowning-moons. It is in your breath.
"Three's strength thunders
Sunders thought and form
With the thump of a blow or the thud of a bomb
The thickest fog thaws,
Air's cleared, song glitters in its wake.
"Four, my echo, you are the glass
Focusing sunlight to fire
A madness dancing in everlasting reflections
An eye in a stare of an eye in a stare
Sculpt wild light, wild thought
Remember tomorrow
Dream yesterday.

"Five is a coil of rightness
Writhing in your belly -
Reaching into its red fronds
You are renewed
Rewritten in every shiver of Wyrd.
"Six crackles and sparks
In deepest dark
Your keenest blade
Keeps eyes awake
Cat-like, seeking, sleek.
"Seven is a dissolving gladness
As a glamour vanishes
Engulfed by a quenching heave
As gardens forget their gates and fences
Become a galaxy of sheer colour.
"Eight whispers through the leaves
Willow-boughs wafting over sweet water
It is the wondering silence between the music and the applause
Where Wyrd won you over to make your truth.
Do you dare to know more?"

No "no" was my "yes"
Held by her eyes, I became my scream
No longer knew myself from not-myself -
Her deft thoughts
Weaving being into becoming -
Dispersed, I entered this intensity...

"Grey is the first, heavy with what may be
A haunted haar
Lashed into a haze of becomings
Thoughts play upon it as fingers on a harpstring
Raw helix, it holds all happenings, all worlds.
"Nerve's fire's the second,
The inexorable burn
Need-fever as now anew breeds now
This blind one, so strong it knows no stealth
Ignites to nurture Wyrd's web.
"Between summer and winter outstretches the third,
A peace-spear cast into mist
The still centre, the storm's eye
The freeze, the cease, a seed of form.
Fetterer, shaper, white bones in red flesh.
"Between summer and winter dances the fourth
Thrilling to the year's pulse
Propelled beyond, the eye turning outwards
Yearns to fly arrow-swift or grow, silent as ivy,
Into the new.

"The fifth is the way beyond the dance
The body, made still, feigns death
Eyes closed, blindness fades
Light of day was a deceit
No near, no far, no time, no space...
Free thought is faster than light.
"The sixth is the universe in a raindrop
A thrown ball caught before it flies
The point made possible
By spells it span itself
A portal all see, but no one knows -
Words will not reach it. You might.
"The seventh bell has rung
In the sky's deep blue vault
Zero sound
And a rain of silver sycamore seeds -
Hope that one embeds in your skin,
Thirst-for-life, Dew-drinker!
"A sky-spin the eighth,
A dizzying swish, singing through senses,
Shines with the sun, cuts with the scythe,
Reshapes soul of all things -
In the ash of its blast, new crystals, new harmonies.
Do you dare to know more?"

I sank back within my skin
Felt my soul breathe
Her needle hovered above me
My scream surrounded it
I lifted myself
Impaled myself on it
It shrieked in me
I withstood. Else nothing.
And at the point of the dread my scream and her voice were one.

"One is the terror of utter truthfulness
Not bravery, but the warrior's clarity
As the sails are trimmed to embrace the hurricane
Beauty was alone this alignment to Wyrd.
"Two bare feet buried in loam. Listen.
Hoping - nothing. Knowing - nothing.
Flesh, brain - as if glass. Hair - winterfronds.
Skin - bark. A new blossom blooms into the blood
At the season's voice, to the warrior who dares to wait.
"Three is a daring leap into certain death
Surrender to necessity, trusting only
Swelling breath in the nerves
A twin's reflected eye -
Alive to now, the warrior wakes -
There was zero knit to infinity. Fare far, fare well.
"Four is the might of matter's remaking
Meteoric inspiration giving speech to the mouth
Inherited beam, an ascent to wisdom -
The warrior never lets it be master, but always be free.

"Five is lissom, liquid life
The third well, whose roar is silent
Time and space wallow in its magnetic lag -
As river to ocean is warrior to this invisible vastness.
"Six is the all-nourished green lord
Springing into being as the vortex whirls
Warrior's warrior, waxes and wanes
With each breath, each day, each year, each life
Dancing, sensing, singing, dying,
Vessel which transforms and is transformed.
"Seven is always. In dreams.
At dewfall, consciousness condenses
Food for the dark warrior -
Day is now!
Made of all times, all deeds.
"Eight is home
The known unknown
Where the far-sown grows
The rose in snow, the last completion
The ever-repeating moment
Of the warrior's death and rebirth."

My scream unfroze and faded
Her touch sealed my last wound -
Scarless, I floated in space -
She dissolved around me and melted into me
The last words like memories
Flowering in my bones...
"Now you know
Your pattern is revealed
But do not think that what you know is true
You have a lifetime to live your truth
Use it well.
Find the life in the words, dare to unknow them
Then you will be a "warrior"
Then you will live what "warrior" means
Then you will sing what "warrior" means

Duncan Smart