Monday, October 29, 2007

A Spell for Samhain

    (Samhain No. 1, for solo piano and processing effects; AD, piano.)

A Spell for Samhain

The black sky glowers its gentle apprehension.
The land spins under a load of snow.

Geese cry on the pond, lost souls calling.
The bare tree shakes in the wind.

How many days and nights, wandering?
He said, from his wraith’s barrow: Let me come home.

Last year at this time I posted these poems. This year, I am posting music as well as a poem. Two piano improvs, recorded at moonrise, three nights after the full Hunter's Moon, and two nights before Samhain itself. (Click on the player button to hear the recordings.) The walls between the worlds at their thinnest, this time of year. This is what happens when you open yourself to that opening.

These two poems are older, but they catch the October/All Hallow's Eve mood for me. Maybe not my greatest poems, but I keep coming back to this subject matter, and making fresh attempts at it. These two poems are, at least, not the worst of these "October poems," some of my earliest attempts at which make me cringe now.

    (Samhain No. 2, for solo piano; AD, piano.)

the Dead

the dead open their hands:
their hands are filled with light.
the dead move upwards,
out of the earth, treading
on the stairs of time.
he comes to the earth
where he was born, moving
out of life's reflections,
into the gap.
no words to describe him:
the bleak face, the gentle,
moving hands. but his eyes,
firelit, obscure;
lonely, empty of
the warmth of life.
he whispers his secrets.
he stares, and you are caught.
a question unresolved.
in his measuring nothing asked.
his eyes turn away, and cold death
returns, indifferent.
he comes to the earth, he is reborn.
the shovel turns the earth;
the earth breathes,
rich, loamy.
the earth knows itself, complete.
but his eyes; the gentle hands.

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Blogger Will said...


4:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew said...
true to the spirit of the Irish mind.

6:23 PM  

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