WEBSITE OF CLARKE EMERVANE

QUEEN OF NIGHT

from Go Spell Death Backwards


I

Heaven threw her whispers in a kiss
and barked it down the ancient skies
to David's city, natally disguised
to silent hymn his majesty;
and she who hung her moonbeams over earth,
sister and mother of the stars,
in mystic genuflection has her birth
of immortality and Time;
no mind may call to memory that eye
spumed from the chaos of God's sea
when he the astral oceans stretched from sky
to sky, and earth was newly hurled
amid a silver gyre of burning stars;
the frontispiece of all the worlds.
And if her mirror-image there appears
amid the constellated fires
to mark the seasons, poetry shall fail
when earth dissolves in fire and snow;
so I shall sing with David and Diane
the lustrous forebear of the month
and add my dying chant to the domain
of heaven's figured orb, and queen of night.

II

The stars in silent homage speak
with words no mortal can divine;
caught in a native slumber deep,
we are immune to how they shine.
While we go where the dream-muse calls,
they watch from twilight over dream;
and as the evening hour falls,
the bashful heavens, as a team
revolve around the flaming spheres
with mirth of infants still at play
and dance until the dawn appears,
handmaidens of the vernal day.
And in this movement not of Time,
we all were unaware, and slept
throughout the wakings of the prime
nocturnal hour spirits kept,
elect their watchings over sleep,
and stayed by children with a prayer;
they dreamed of Him, and deep to deep
was answered them. Now through the air
like fragments riven from a fire,
they gleam with garments of their sire,
and strum the mute sky as a lyre,
and dance until the dawn is there.

But who is she who fronts the train
with shawl of great celestial light
and hounds the heavens; fair as fain
this gypsy rides upon the night;
the earth beneath her feet like flames
waxes and wanes in silver glow,
and night doth gladly bear the reins
where the Almighty bid her go;
she shakes off the abyssal sky
in scorn of August's mournful way;
enchants the darkness with an eye,
and earth is caught up in the interplay;
the empty hillside brims with gold,
and even the forgotten flower glistens
as time is for a moment sold
into the idyll. Heaven listens.
Ensconced between the dawn and dusk
she sits, earth captive to her smile,
and seas enchanted swelling must
expend her anthems for a while;
into the stables of the dawn
with burning semblance of her brother
she rides, ambassador of morn;
and to the shapeless night, is mother;
and she is prophetess, for we
may touch the sun we cannot see;
and she is priestess, I perceive,
for Day I cannot see, and yet believe.

III

The train of vagrants glimmers in the harbor
beneath the dusken eye o' th' Potter's moon;
the molded mountains o'ershadow the arbor,
and darkness calls to darkness as a loon;
the castellated hillside glitters with towers
amid the sight's enchanting, in a line
struck through the bleak horizon's dying powers,
and broken is the black on argentine;
the summoned systems sparkle for Day's grieving
knit like a spangled curtain for her throne
when she begins her race, and our conceiving
can barely fathom why she is alone;
but if her waning moves the stars to shiver
and beg from her penumbra o'er the sea
emergence of the empress, gilded giver
of loanéd light in her inconstancy,
then shall the swagman know the dome's consorting
with Sophia; for all her ministry,
as like the moon unto the sun resorting,
is herald of the trifid Deity.
Lady of light, whose carriage counts the hours!
to dawn you hail your Maker in the midnight
birthed in the dusky twilight of the stars
presiding o'er their voyages, and ours;
and while the spheres in silent homage move
to prove what is the mystery of Love,
the dull wind whispers by the factory door
dim rumors of the immemorial.

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