6.12.2012

The Song of the Visitor

it is addressed thusly:
A vision.
it reads:
In the place of the paving stones,
Where there were a hundred homes
Lined up against each other in rows
I knew not one from the other, but saw
A man greeting me, waved from afar
And I came afoot as one who knows
To describe the colors I must attempt
It was varigate, of gray and dun unkempt
And the gentle old cars, of teal and white
And red and black and the chrome glinted
The stone homes and their austerity hinted
Through windows dim, of coming night
And I breathed the air, under the bluegray
With slate cloud in gossamer overlay
Sky, and I knew this man, though why
Here I cannot say, and he stood and waved
At the doorway, which here behaved
As windbreaker with its vinyl hood nigh
About its neck, and he said, "Dear friend,
Come off of the paving stones 'round the bend
For I know you have come far on foot
Was there no bus to carry, no cycle or car?"
"No," Said I, "Bullet train, but it is quite far."
"Then you should shake off the soot,
I wish that you had aforetime made call
And I would have driven to the wall
Myself and carried you here, but now,"
He said and opened the heavy latch
Just before the wind did catch
And carry dust quickly over the brow
Of the hill behind, which was lined
By houses hundred, old, refined
Who watched over the paving stones.

Within was appointed, as with such homes
A room twelve high and heavy tones
Of red and dark and damask pattern
As if a field of flowers there was strewn
Or was from their inward places hewn
But none of this had really mattered
He continued, "come in and I will show
This thing that you have come to know."
And the hum of electric lighting
Was soon to greet, my coat to stow
And with a glance as one does know
We were to our new task alighting.
"Did you know," He spoke anew
"Of that fellow, the late Agnew?"
I replied that I had not heard
And under lintels heavy passed
Here and there the curios amassed
Some old some new, but no word
And I checked my pocket clock
Whose lucence did the shadow mock
It was not more than half past three
And I pressed the item's flank
And therewhich its face went blank
And pocketed it, again to see
My friend walking now with haste
"There yet is no time to waste,
I must know your thoughts on this."
And through the kitchen we did turn
Whose humming was a silent spurn
To the door which opened with a hiss
A bulkhead here? What had he in
The place below, the dark within
Stretched below the twelve-foot height
With a hue of blue unearthly night
Beneath the heavy, austere homes?

Of blue, silver and green the tones
This deepling chamber under the stones
The pipes and wires, as though alive
Like some thing great and olden
Was to this underplace beholden
And did by slow breath live and thrive
"What is this?" I did to him say
But my odd fear he did not allay
And simply descended further yet
And the stairs that creaked and groaned
Played concert with the pipes which moaned
And sighed until we at bottom met
And the damp from here was driven out
Wheeled I then in curiosity about
To see what must have been a great machine
Or was, with its lights and dials
And small lit faces and tubes like vials
Of elfin wine, and thought I'd seen
A monstrosity, but he stopped and said,
"I ought to have been three times dead
But I have fortunes yet to be told
Here and see what hands have made
And be glad you had not kept, and stayed
But stepped forth, like me, quite bold
Against the dark and lit a lamp.."
He did trail off here, for the damp
Did bring him cough and wheeze below
This strange tomb of bluegreen glow
Whose white music breathed its tones?

Then unbeknownst to the heavy stones
Watched above by austere homes
He brought me to the central thing
Around which gathered many a screen
Which blinked to life as one who'd been
By the waking alarm's loud sting
Awakened, and I saw within
A host of tables, the numbers a din
Of movement and black and white
He said after a glance or two
And the pointer to quickly move
"Come, and see the thing aright
And see that mighty fragility
Which is though sterile, virility
And gives some life, where all was dead."
And down a metallic hallway we went
Which to neither way it bent
And now blinking and turning head,
I saw within the vacuum hold
Something brilliant and old
Whose tiny window showed a light
Which was full of stars and darkness
Whose silent spiral, markless
Held in it both day and night
He then said (perhaps to me,)
"This is the power of dark energy,
And if it should but shift a foot
Crushed to darkened powder, us
And those who pass now in the bus
Will all become but airless soot."
And the power of life and death
Were always man's, by his breath
Not by this or any device
But in him always, I know for sure
Without the singularity's lure
And my blood ran cold as ice;
So by churning the dying worlds
Man and beast make life and pearls
And we stood in the bluegreen glow
And we stood in the chamber below
Below the heavy, paving stones
Watched by the hundred austere homes.

2 comments:

  1. That is one trippy poem. I recall you telling me of a dream you once had of a science lab or factory in the basement of an austere house.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yeah! I crafted it into an equally weird poem.

    ReplyDelete

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