The waning voice of the hills means
no great loss. Tepid pools collect dew,
spew mist into the morning miasma
of the new, of dawn's breaking on
the reddened horizon, riddling bracken
and heather with dappled rays of gold.
Within this fevered world of promise,
I struggle to find a lasting path forward.
No whispering wind points the way,
no guide awaits, adorned in shadow.
Each step shall be my first and my last,
forging a sacred road through
the fractured landscape. Birds flutter
in my wake, flummoxed by invasive noise.
Clouds tie the nascent sky in knots, pull
taut the strings of cirrus streaking through
the hemisphere of blue, too early for their cue,
too thin to bless the earth with rain. They lack
the muscle of thunderheads, which pummel
dust into mud, impregnate sun-drunk flowers
with sodden pollen, pistils limp, petals
shaped into bell-like goblets to catch the flow.
I have left behind a lifetime of riches, buried
in the past, obliterated into oblivion, hidden
underground with the dead, who count
wealth in opportunities missed: windows
to re-create the possibility of victory with
the simple toss of the dice, with the winning card
tucked safely away in your hand. I am no gambler,
but I thrill to the endless chase for glory,
Everything depends on its radiant flux. How it
enlarges the self, how it rises above the mundane,
sharing in the grandeur of the gods, who frolic
in the lowly human's plight. Our heroes began
as flesh and blood: Hercules, Achilles, Odysseus.
Who will call on them to savor our triumphs?
Who will fly to our aid when Apollo turns his back?
None can say nor dare invoke the Delphic Oracle.
We fight alone, mired in the finite, craving the infinite.
O mercy without end. When will you come? When
will we die in the edict of the eternal: the present
everlasting, now wholly human?