AS IN THE CAVES

August [24] 2008

 (Poem)

  

As in the caves where black was bright

and golden rays could not be thought

of souls in daze of endless night;

 

We marched our spirit staid and white,

beyond the halls of null and naught

as in the caves where black was bright.

 

And down poured waves of vengeant blight

bemoaning raves invective wrought

of souls in daze of endless night.

 

Then welling dry I spied a sprite

whose sight I held but never caught

as in the caves where black was bright.


The blinding shrill of naught clung tight,

taunting the will forever sought

of souls in daze of endless night.

 

The whole of hell, and all her might–

we befell her charm and hard had fought,

as in the caves where black was bright

our souls in daze of endless night.

                                        1971 

Note: I wrote this villanelle at 21, as an English major at Beloit College.  People have asked the cause of the poem’s apparent angst, and I’m sorry to report it was written after a minor argument with my father over the car keys.  It remains, to date, the only poem I’ve been able to put to memory. FSA

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