Behind a cloud-veil hidden,
The stars turned their gaze away
From scenes in heaven forbidden -
A parable of dismay.
Woe was she!
And for what yearning?
Such that she could not see
Beyond the fire of her soul burning.
Stately proceeded the lady of night,
Shadow-shrouded her dark face,
Raven-haired, and robed in white,
Stirred from her restless resting place.
Wandering, squandering an infinity,
Upon the swards of yester thought,
In search of tranquility
That death alone could not wrought.
Among the cool stones,
Wailing of doom,
Liberated of flesh and bones,
Stepped she from tomb to tomb,
Her misery sung, for a hundred years,
Of fortune missed and love lost,
Unassuaged by time or tears,
Turned straightway to silver frost.
For the cup of death
Quenched not her thirst
For another drink of breath
As fresh as was her first.
Raised she the goblet of fate
To blood-ruby lips pursed in prayer,
But did not partake of the sacramental bait
Laid to venom her soul to eternity’s lair.
Cheered the noblest ghosts,
Made numb by endless procrastination,
And raised the wine of empty toasts
To her refused consecration.
And sounded the mocking howl
Of wind upon the fog-scented air.
And scorned the night owl
From his secret chair,
Until the face of dawn
With widening eyes
Of denial looked on
In feigned surprise,
While an usher of mist
Bore her from the ceaseless fray,
From the guest list
Of another day.
Thus to her sepulcher she retired,
To abide another morrow,
Where she dreamed, and conspired,
And silently sipped the spirit of sorrow.
~ Daniel F Mitchell