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Among the Dying Hours

Am I to digress upon a sleepless night?
With a futile hesitance, and fingertips to the door,
but a shutter from the core, and a shutter,
that shakes the morning, and the streets,
dusty barren streets that run along the gutter,
and run along the sidewalk till they meet,
their end.
And I dare not shake the heavens, or the quiet leaves of grass,
or my reflection on the flora as if the workings were of glass.
But I know where I stand.
In the pensive, paltry mourning that adorns my eyes with tears,
the earthly breaks of silence that I have not heard in years,
for voices of forgotten yell abrasive in my ears.

And ghosts in Sméagol’s river take my person by the hand,
and walk.

For I was just one traveler, stopping in and out at night,
I’d overlooked such counsel as to never follow lights,
to never follow glimmers that make dead eyes seem so bright,
as I’d fall into their silence, and forever I would stay,
and with a shutter I should say,
that I had fallen, and in passing through the day,
I noticed in displeasure that for sure I could not walk,
only lay.

In the room women come and go,
talking of Desiderio.
Oh, love is but a curse for me,
a terse and lowly specter that I shouldn’t ever see,
for as the mind begins to wonder and the dust begins to wear,
when the storm has cast asunder all that makes November fair,
the winds will keep on gusting,
the metal bars keep rusting,
they settle on the chapter that permits me to declare,
that I am not Guy Montag and my books aren’t burning hence,
I’ve taken roads less traveled by and found no difference,
from other roads that break the way inside a yellow wood,
and though I know I justly could, I will not be going back,
it does not make much of sense.

In the room women come and go,
talking of Desiderio.

And I’m of such a verse that falls between two hidden lines,
decorate the ragged page, fulfill with high remorse,
ridden of insomnia and just riddled now with age.
I may just lie tearfully, and accept the keeper’s course,
for I am not a sleeper, nor am known to be, of course,
I am but a shadow in the tempest that inflicts the king with rage.
And am I, quite, the Prince of Thieves,
to steal a swollen heart or just to fill my arms with leaves,
and let them glide into the night that’s transfixed upon the page,
fall on to the audience and all about the stage,
for the world is mine, the world is, ours,
and I am just naïve.
Or am I on the brink, the subtle cliff that Dover hails,
standing on the edge and falling, swept off by its wind?
No, I have simply tripped and have fallen into mind,
I haven’t felt her sand or shaken hands with Dover’s rock,
perhaps I’ve slipped past sanity and am dabbling in shock,
either or, my eyes are wide to have pictured twenty sails,
sailing to Byzantium,
sailing intertwined,
with a hundred storms of Shakespeare that are rising far and near,
from the billows of The Tempest to the thunder of King Lear,
but I’m not of those tails,
I’m forever here.

And ah, the pale, permissive window,
that I distinctly, if distinctly, can renew,
upon a trembling pane,
and a lifeless trance, by chance, that had woken me anew,
but I was quite the same,
for as I’d stop a while, and watch the wind blow,
and my temperance a syncope,
I would picture, if for a moment, dying portraits of the past,
and I wondered if the day we die is truly just the last,
perhaps there is an afterlife, perhaps I’ve not surpassed,
the moment of my living, or even of my birth,
is it possible that He, does not desire me, to farewell this fallen Earth?
Yes, rather I am waiting on the silken certain dew,
that perforates the morning and perhaps, the evening as well,
than walking through the darkness till I reach the gates of hell.
What is left remaining, in the wicker bend I stroll?
Such a clattered path as is to break the road,
and even as I strode and I caught a morning breath,
I felt as if paralysis has begot such certain death,
such death to be repaid by salvation to the soul,
eternal hate and fury supplemented with a rest,
and a toll.
Oh, who am I to test the God,
to walk along a silent street and establish with my hand,
a token, quite the plea, and a wish not for a brand,
not to be stung by a prod,
not to be called a fool,
though at times be called complacent,
permissive, and merited by heart,
to, for a coaler, be a jewel,
and if anything, apart,
for the world of faceless brooders see no pictures,
by large or if by grand,
and this, to me, is odd.

Have you ever heard the sweet, unbridled
singing of the Sirens, leading boat upon man to ruin,
in which I have dabbled quite formally, as one should say,
“a man for all seasons, but this man is a child”,
and “well tempered he is, but certainly wild”,
for all the derelict deities to be done and in doing,
catch me away to sea, and ensuing,
is the wreck, the wreck, that takes me away,
to some phantasmal isle,
though I did not frown, I smiled,
I smiled and beguiled, for now there was time,
in every morning and afternoon,
in every sun and every moon,
and is especially sublime.
Though I am not Gulliver, nor are my travels,
I show not the picaresque,
nor my story unraveled,
I simply am man, through all grime and gravel,
I am simply, versatile.

Though, after all games are ended,
where does the vagabond sleep amid crossing paths?
For wealth seeks not the troubadour, the wrath
is reality, the reality,
transcended.

And ere the fleeting dawn awakes,
when essence is replaced by feeling,
I know where I stand.
A sane man engulfed, by water, by man,
by insanity that, is quite the heavy load to carry,
quite the spurious burden upon my hand,
and rightly, it aches.
And I can hear the music, prosperous among the early crowd,
faintly loud, and proud to the point that at times it is sung,
and the earth quakes, and the sky, it shakes,
and we are forced not to stand,
but to fall, all,
in the temporal plea for man,
fall.





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