“Portrait of an Old Woman,” Guido Reni, 1630, WikiArt.

Part 3: Crone Nayera, Reverse-Transformed.

Memories of rolling oxen cart, staring upwards,
Sunlight trees, silver light illuminating veins of
Leaves, spidery branches, I was one with more
Than myself, hovering tween earth and heaven,
Breathing slowing to cessation, release of soul
From body, Ælectrona asking, “Do you wish to
Continue as Diadema?” My years passing as
Papyri uncurling to floor, destiny unreckoned,
I responded with pained gasp of air, “Yes!” Agéd
Hands on my brow, crone, Nayera at our cart,
“She breathes now, steady child.” Pungent potion,
Philtrum-placed, I awoke from healing powers of
Nayera or of Ælectrona, consoling eyes, certainties
Of soul, Cora was dead, thought-being of Diadema
Resurrected in goddess servitude.

“What haunts you child, what horrors have you
Witnessed?” Nayera asked, my head cupped in
Strong hands. “Holy Mother, I saw goddess
Bathing nude, admittance to sanctuary given,
Canopy of sunlit trees, her blessings received,
We embraced in forest, breathing into each
Other as one, foreheads, souls touching.” Lo!
Nayera’s smelling salts awakened my mind,
Full account I provided, dismay, yet relief of
Parents, unharmed by man. “Tell me of this
Blessing?” And, so I explained, and to Nayera
Demonstrated, my hands on her arms. Gods
In heaven! I fell backwards, her destinies
Reckoned, visions daylight clear, birth and
Death, skein of life, dark secrets unshared.

“Oriental Woman,” Kimon Loghi, WikiArt.

Marching soldiers, beating drums, Nayera’s city
Invaded, burned, peal of warning bells, homes,
Temples destroyed, statue of goddess defiled,
Nayera, priestess, violated, blood on marble
Steps, left for dead. Alas! Her mind lost, she
Wandered from farms to olive groves, stealing
Food, living amongst field beasts, healer-crone
She became, seeking solace in curing chants,
Herbs and elixirs, haunted by past tumult,
Affinity to divine, turning point of life-pages,
Self-neglected hovel death – or present herself
To temple as healer: balms, lancing blades,
Boiling honey, all discerned with single touch,
Secrets thrusting us to ground, reversed trans-
Formed, Nayera was once mystic Erenay.*

Destinies reckoned, Diadema learns dark truth about crone, Nayera, ravages
of war ushered reverse transformation, priestess to lost wanderer. Connection of
and poetry writing, the last stanza was written whilst listening to “The City”
(Remastered) by Vangelis Papathanassiou:
Thanks for reading. 

* Poem 762. “Erenay, Moon Mystic, Part 1”:

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