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Sacrifice for an Unnamed God

This series of poems was written during the late autumn of 2004 (pages 1 through 8) and the summer of 2005 (pages 9 through 16), as a kind of journal of miscellaneous thoughts, emotions and events, and then completely forgotten for many years, until I ran into the old notebook quite by chance whilst going through old papers. While I'm sure most of it wont go down in the annals of great poetry, it does form a whole that seemed interesting enough to share with the world.

(Page 13 is dated 8 July 2005, which probably explains the dark tone of it, and the following pages.)

Page 1

I bring before thee
a whispering moon
that falls
upon a page of white.

A wisp of a cloud
so white and frail,
so fast, so fleeting.
Does it dim that whispering light?
Does it wrap its cold light
in a glittering shawl of silver?
Make the moon more beautiful than ever,
but for the shortest moment?

Does it share the light?
A mirror, not blocking, but
passing
passing on
wider, greater,
veiled and unveiled,
dimmed, hidden
and clothed, jewelled.

Now I forget.
Did I bring before thee the moon,
or light,
or cloud,
or none?

Page 2

These pages whisper as I turn.

A gentle crackle, crickle.
And my pen whispers,
a silent zephyr,
a scratching zephyr,
a zephyr from here to there,
from me to it,
it to you.

Where does a zephyr blow
on a full moon night?
It does not tell me.
It's as silver as the moon.
It's as quick as the night wind.

A flow of silence strikes me
as I lift this pen,
lay down this page.
A flow, a flood,
it sweeps,
it takes,
it drowns.

Quicksilver droplets, disperse.

Page 3

An emptiness,
a silence,
I leave here,
on this feather altar.

Washed in moonlight,
dried by wind,
pure and new,
pure and old.

A forgetfulness,
a carelessness,
a hope.
(A despair.)

A whisper of another time,
a whisperer,
a listener,
a vessel and a source.

An emptiness, a silence,
growing, growing,
into a sound of a universe,
into a sound of anotherverse.
Then again oblivion,
moonlight,
silent wind,
on this feather altar.

Page 4

Today I bring you a sun.
A cold sun,
a frosty sun.

A sun whose warmth lingers,
but not on the flesh.
Pale blue above,
white below,
the sun as my heart,
but too far
to hear it beat.

Frost under my feet,
grasp at a ray
(please, please stay!)
as cool as a moonbeam,
as pale as silver,
glitters on my palm,
in my eye.

Could I fly?
Or swim?
Up a river of sunsilver?
But it's too thin.

I come to you with empty hands.

Page 5

In cold sun,
bathing.

On a concrete shore
of an island of green
in a city square.

A pigeon
as white as the sun,
as the sky,
as the ground,
on one corner.

A pigeon
as black as the sky
and beyond,
as the ground,
on the other.

And brown
as the ground,
so small,
forlorn,
a lone sparrow,
in the middle.

All so still,
like a framed memory.

Page 6

I would bring you the song of birds.
But I don't hear them.
Do walls stand between?
Is the night too black?

I would sing myself, if I dared.
I don't know their tongue,
I don't know them.
No one does.

Yet I have their song,
locked in a box,
bound by a tape of glimmering silk,
carved in shimmering stone,
adrift on a current so strong
it sweeps over the world,
yet leaves no mark.

But it is not.
And never will.

Page 7

The sun I bear in a cage of glass.
A breath.
A fog.
A polish.
Perfection.

Deep, deep in that cage I glare
for the sun,
and he's there.
Oh yes.
Sleepy sometimes.
Hiding.
And glaring, too. Back at me.
Glaring.
Flaring.
He wants to be free.
I'll let him be.
For a while.

Page 8

There's a crack in my glass eye.
A manmade crack.

The sun won't escape through that crack.
Oh no.
But I'll let him breathe.
And I'll breathe with him.

And sometimes it yawns, that crack.
And his breath upon me,
so heavenly cool.
Sometimes shut tight,
but I don't stop,
I still breathe.
Does he?
Does he breathe in an airtight cage?
Glass sphere peep hole?

He burns and burns, though.
No fire without air.
No smoke without fire.

I breathe against this glass eye cage.
I leave a fog, a film of smoke.
His smoke I breathed from him.
Leave it there for him to see.
Just to tease him.

Page 9

Tonight I bring you summer and spring.
A scent in the air.
A magic.

I bring you dewdrops and rainfall.
I bring you the light of a falling star.
I bring you the song of a blackbird
in the dead of night.
I bring you the song of a nightingale,
as darkness falls,
so sweet,
velvet,
smooth,
moist.

I'd sing you a song of the summer night,
I'd sing you a song of spring twilight,
but the silence moves me,
the solitary bird
(blackbird or nightingale?)
is all I need.

Thus I stand
before the night
and breathe.
Just breathe.

Page 10

Sunless world
won't burn,
and yet
I cage myself with glass.

I whisper hollow little words:
'Beauty'
'Magic'
'Love'
'Night',
and scream inside
and not.

Am I content?
To cage myself while night flies by,
uttering these hollow little words
with a silent mind-mouth?

Thus I bring to thee
content and discontent,
rest and unrest,
hope and fear.

A night that is a double-edged blade,
a two-headed serpent,
a lover,
a friend.

Page 11

I bring a hat full of mud,
of muck, of grit, of tire-prints.

I bring a sky full of wind,
a breeze, a gale, a storm,
biting, freezing
(maybe,
I don't mind),
but blowing,
gripping,
groping,
for me and mine.

The thief sky,
the blowing breath of mischief.

And I bring a body full of lazy bones,
bearing a hat full of mud.
Water or fire, maybe,
would purify
what earth and wind sullied.
But I bear a body full of lazy bones,
and bear my mud with pride.

Page 12

I bring thee a name.

A pretty name, a happy name.
But I forget.

I bring thee a name.

A solemn name, a grave name.
But I regret.

I bring thee a name.

A silly name, a bouncing name.
But I let it fly.

I bring thee a name.

A gracious name, an inspiring name.
But you do not wish it.

I take a name from you.

And that is right.

Page 13

Today I bring you casualties by the dozen.
I lay them before you, corpse by corpse.
I send in the wounded, hobbling along,
leaning on each other.

I bring you entertainment,
massacre and blood,
turned into TV extravaganza,
bottled up, serve chilled with crisps and ketchup,
and hour after hour
of unrelenting gaze
that sees nothing.

An electric buzz I bear in my arms,
that seeks,
dauntless,
relentless,
the damned, the lost, the

(sacrificed,
in the name of some thing)

I bring
the un-pain and un-sorrow
that they bring to us
today, as they did
almost four years ago.
and every single other day.

Page 14

A madness has crept into the world.

(You know, don't you?)

And I stand, I twist, I whisper, I shout,
this ritual world,
unfeeling world,
too feeling world.

Pain is forever.
Pain is our own,
our very own,
and as such it is nobody else's,
no, not ever, not never.

And a madness has crept into the world.

A madness of blindness,
the blindness of the deaf,
the silence of the illiterate,
the words of the dumb.

We see and hear and read and see and see

and nothing else.
We forget our world,
lost in madness.

Page 15

The devil is here,
we feel him near,

as we sit, unblinking,
in our withdrawing rooms.

And
'Yes,'
we say,
'The devil is near,'

and open up
another beer,

pass along
the bowl of crisps,

the sweet incense
of salt and grease,
and the devil is here.

And our minds wander
to lilies and meadows and log fires and bodycounts,
thunder and hurricane X, old mister next door comic relief.

And we are all, aren't we,
casualties.

Page 16

Today I whisper before thee
a silent prayer.

I whisper the whisper
of the leaves in the trees.
I whisper the whisper
of blades of grass.

I whisper gentle footsteps on a mowed lawn,
a rattle of keys and a lover's kiss.

I whisper the silence of a warm summer's day,
as the world stands still.

I whisper my heartbeat,
my gentle breath,
the flow of my blood,
and the wind in my hair.

I whisper sweet nothings,
and I whisper the wisdom of old.

License Information

The poems on this page are released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license. You are granted permission to distribute and modify them, as long as you credit me, Ben B. Bainton, as the original author and distribute the poems or any derivative works under a similar license.