Part 4: Flesh-Conceiving Vessel (Last)
Temple plateau, wind-waving trees, Kandanke’s
Deific soul to scudding clouds cast, nothingness
Dissolved. Tearing gowns, deific chorus grief-
Silenced, her final verses so we believed. First
Tier of stone steps I, Tizmay, descended, climb
Down arduous as up, except defeat admitted,
Theron’s tomb discovered, afterlife chamber, his
Presence felt, consciousness heart-beating strong,
Divinity bones lingering, starless night transformed
To sunless morn, nothing round me tangible, real.
“Guide my steps, my lord,” to Theron I prayed,
Marble wall stone fissure found, voice arising
From within, holy crypt, hinges broke, bone
Chamber entrance granted.
“On this bright morn, presence at catacombs
Felt, young woman, pure of heart, unsuspecting
Innocence,” Theron thought aloud of me. Yes,
I paused, partaking fragrance of rose blooms,
Reflecting lost lovers, and by chance, resurrection.
Theron cared not what form taken, male or female,
Once again hailing these heights as his sovereign
Empire. Death chamber I beheld, leathery body
Supine on four-wheel chariot, afterlife grave gifts,
Bronze armor, sword and shield, mummified flesh
Bones enshrouded. What gifts could I offer his lord,
But smallest coin, lip-kissed in nascent romance,
Placed into awaiting time-withered hands.
Footsteps light, upon his chariot I climbed, belted
Dagger taken, cut across my palm, blood dripped
Upon his brow, and there, in faith, laid I beside
Him, breasts close pressed, mother nursing
Child. “My, lord, may light return to your eyes,
Sinews awaken,” I prayed. “May life return, your
Noble heart, hammered anvils ringing.” Lo! Blinding
Sun-storm, mother, son, father, daughter, groom,
And maiden bride, all admixed, conjoined, mortal
Pain beyond weeping, life in death, such celestial
Strength Theron wielded, not lover, but captive
Taken, body and soul possessed, Theron within
My womb quake-quickened.
O! Heaven’s seed! Flesh-conceiving vessel, his
Resurrection as newborn babe, mother, father,
Son, re-emergence of Kandake, unholy trinity,
Hope of godly courtship denied, male child
To cave abducted, ambrosia fed and raised,
Mother’s milk, fountain-spring, upon barren
Earth poured. In defiance of gods, sacred naos
I prayed, “What profits divine, my maiden flesh
So violated? Deific response lightning bolts,
Wintry winds, floods chased me down stone
Steps, Kandanke’s words mind echoing, “Ancient
Arbiter, Theron destroyed as much created.”
Alas! I recalled, as children, we were forbidden
To visit or to speak of ancient ruins, stone steps
Rising mountain heights, often lost to cloud.
Thanks for reading.