Thursday, July 3, 2014

Scheherazade (Magritte), Sonnet #187


A globe of ice at the bottom of a tumbler
Melts by a single drop every single night.
We live in a world tyrannized by the number --
A silver bell tolls three four five six seven eight,
And softly, oh so very softly, distant and faint,
The echoes ring off clouds and curtains, then slumber.
The last tone, which never comes, startles the egrets
From their rookery in the tower, its ramparts
Blasted and collapsed, abandoned without regret.
So, Scheherazade, the talker, dealer in hearts,
Each night turns a drop of her blood into a pearl --
Better to become jewelry than a dead girl.
The thousand nights will pass and leave her dreaded sire
Only her eyes and a smile to quench his desire.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Love Song (Edward Burne-Jones), Sonnet #186

The organ not being an instrument of romance --
The golden woman, her eyes like old coins, fingers
Keys and sheet music, resurrects an antic dance,
As the last kiss of her lover, like dusk, lingers.
He stares through the pipes at his new passion; dozing,
The sister, with her fingers between the pages
Of Arthurian tales of knights seeking, losing,
At times finding honor and love for the ages.
He's no Lancelot, just an armored fighting man
Who woos, beds, and betrays every woman he can.
In scarlet, his new prey is pleased to bare her thigh
And knees, even her shoulder, to conjure a sigh.
In a sheath between those gilded knees, a short knife
Will take her own, her sibling's, or her lover's life?