Opening the Secret Shrine

Opening the Secret Shrine

I approach the hour when the stars are hidden
in the belly of the sky;
she swallows them all at the moment of this Sun-God’s descent;
and I am this Sun-God whose name has been lauded
by the nine netjeru-gods.

Listen, see; turn over on your sides you corpses of the earth,
and open your eyes to behold my luminous passing;
for I am the Great God, the Ram-Soul of brilliant flesh of gold,
and it is my countenance of peace that stills the terrors of the night!

Be still in your hearts, be comforted by my forthcoming,
and I will rise up as one of the Unwearying Stars before your eyes;
the earth in your bleary eyes removed by my golden savor.
The nine netjeru-gods proclaim my manifestation
above the dome of that western cavern,
but it is my cloud of sandalwood which precedes me,
and my turquoise light-beams which declare my potency.

Listen, see; my name causes a shudder to throw back the earth
in the presence of the Nine Gods;
their appointed guardians rise up on their haunches to salute me;
their fists beat their breasts as they do for the eastern horizon;
and they shout henu!  Henu!  Salutations!  Salutations!

Be still no longer; arise like those Unwearying Stars in the sky,
O you corpses in the earth whom the west has swallowed;
the fragrance of myrrh of my Mother is upon your flesh,
and she has suckled you at her dusky breast;
she has opened her thighs for you at dawn in her name of
Mistress of Heaven;
she has birthed you as she has birthed Ra in the hour of his renewal.
Stand up you corpses of the west, for the Great Ba-Soul abounds
with light to guide you in your hour of terror!

Listen, see; my name is Khepri in the moment of my becoming,
who shields the nascent power of the Sun when he comes forth
from the Secret Shrine;
he has his Mother’s scent upon him, and her fluid glistens his limbs
of fine gold;
behold how you glisten with him like turquoise when the earth is reborn!

Come, approach, and open the ears of your heart of lustrous carnelian.
I arrive at the Place of the Hauling with the sand of the Mound
upon my feet; this sand over which the Great Ram-Soul has tread;
thus I pass, and I cannot be hindered at any moment of the night;
and as day this sand becomes the renewal of my earth.

Homage is done to this sovereign of the west in our midst;
the Lord of the Secret Shrine is upon his sand in the nether cavern.
Are not his Unwearying Stars above his brow?
Their faces shine in the darkness for his glory.
Are not his long legs striders upon the coils of the serpent?
Its scales of many colors writhe beneath his divine and naked feet;
he needs no safeguard from their venom, for he is the Lord of Terror!

O Sokar who strides upon his sand, who throws open the doors
of the Hidden Shrine, the Lord of Dread in the West and Master
of the nether circuits; lift me up to your sand and upon your Mound;
make my ascension with me into the Henu-Ark when its power
navigates the celestial sky; take me into the confidence of your
knowledge of heavenly things; these secrets being my nourishment
forever!

See now you corpses of the earth; behold, hear, and let your hearts
breathe again; for this Sokar is upon his sand in the western cavern,
where he takes in his two fists the wings of this serpent of manifold
color; it is the life of the Sun-God when he is reunited with the corpse
of Ausir who has slumbered.
He has slumbered as you have slumbered; but there is no tarrying
in the cavern of the west forever;
for the thighs of the Sky shudder in their birth pangs for you,
and you shall become the very face of the Sun-God when he emerges.

O Ausir, kernel of the Mysterious Lord, tall of crown and dazzling
of countenance, whose turquoise is upon him in the eastern horizon;
if you are the corpse of the Sun-God, then I am the corpse of the Sun-God;
if Sokar is upon his sand to send you forth, then I am sent forth with you!
If you turn over on your right side, standing upright to behold the dawn,
then I am turned upright as a babe to suckle at the breast of my Mother
Auset!
If Ra is reunited with his nether body within the Land of Sokar,
then I too am reunited with my stellar body, and it is his hand
that lifts me up in the sky as one among the Imperishable Stars.

Listen, see; my lord is the Lord of Terror when he is upon his sand,
when he rises to his Mound in the Secret Shrine, when he stands
upright on the back of his serpent of many colors;
his stride long over the sandbanks, and his tall crown piercing the nether sky.
His cavern is hoisted above his head, and his savor of myrrh uplifts
the vault below the sleeping earth.

Come Sokar, Lord of the Secret Shrine, you dweller upon the Mound,
you who are upon your sand in that Nether Land;
behold how I arrive in your presence clad in the mantle of the eastern horizon!
My savor is that of sandalwood when it rises to the Nine Gods as a cloud;
and they acclaim my rebirth as a follower in your stellar retinue.
I have bathed in your sweat of myrrh when your tread empowered the Mound;
I have risen upon that Mound as you have risen, with my face turned
toward the east.

All you netjeru-gods standing on the sandbanks with your eyes wide open,
behold me when I approach the doors of your cavern in the west!
See me as a body of venerable light coming to announce the dawn;
indeed, suckled by the breast of the eastern sky and nourished upon
her fragrance!

You who have yet to see the Sun in his moment of becoming,
come now and see me rise as the master of the sky.
Shed your night terrors, your sleep, and your hibernation.
Receive the shimmering turquoise of my divine body,
opened again from that Secret Shrine whose doors appear
before the mansion of all spirits.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

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The Heron Wears Your Mantle

The Heron Wears Your Mantle

The east is your sycamore dappled with beams of turquoise;
a shrine thrown open by the brilliant hands of the sky.
O Ra Lord of Light-rays whose pervasive cloud of myrrh heralds his feet,
the sky is your ba-soul when dawn sees your face as the mirror of heaven.

A western mountain stretches with its goddess to meet the vault;
her horns of fine gold catch your beams like a net of precious metal.
Her open thighs know you when your sandalwood incense rises;
the god-making fragrance is your ba-soul when you enter the wind as its lord.

The holy waters are your ateruw-flood bursting from earth’s cavern;
in secret your deft hand brings the river from which all life draws breath.
O Ra the Father of the First Occasion whose flood lives in every vessel,
the waters are your ba-soul as they break open the body of the earth.

A lotus has stolen the blue mantle of the sky where you bathe;
the east finds your sun-pool submerged in molten gold luster.
Your Mother the Sky extends her hands to upraise you from the torrent,
the hallowed shell of your wet body appearing as the iridescent beetle.

The lotus is your eastern throne on the tide of the morning pool;
a first beginning where flood’s loins reveal their dusky secrets.
O Ra, Khepri who divides the waters in darkness where they churn;
the lotus is your ba-soul when its gleam parts the river by dawn.

A mound emerges from the deep pushed by your feet of electrum;
how the void flees your brilliance when you glimmer as the sun-beetle.
Yours is the seed of mysteries from which the magic of the sky flowers;
in darkness your seed becomes the sun rolled through the nether waters.

The heron wears your mantle when he breaks the fragile sky;
his bill proclaims the first dawn shooting from your fist.
O Ra, Benu-bird of scintillating plumage as first light finds your feathers;
the heron is your ba-soul when your migration brightens the world.

A calf with lapis dapples strides between the sycamores at daybreak;
his eyes possess the all-seeing sun which climbs the sky as his father.
He carries the light of the earth on his back as you traverse the clouds;
two realms are yours by day and night with earth beneath your hooves.

The domains of east and west become your summit where you appear;
bright gold and malachite reveal your body kissed by cloud trappings.
O Ra, Lord of Manifestations to whom earth and sky pay homage;
creation is your ba-soul when your heart’s light opens the lonely waters.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

House of Deities / Bringers of the Sky

House of Deities

Bringers of the sky, open your hands for me;
I receive the Unwearying Stars from your grasp,
and the bolts of the eastern horizon slide back at my command.
I enter your portals with the savor of a god on my skin;
thus the bolts flee before my hand and the doors before my feet.

May your celestial eyes be in the company of my holdings;
your magic of the vault with its Imperishable Stars;
your speech which divides the abyss and upraises the earth;
your fragrance of myrrh which surrounds you in your forthcoming;
your terror on the western horizon which devours souls;
your standards of pure gold flashing in the east, higher than clouds;
your diadem of the Cobra-Goddess whose venom strikes the adversaries;
your Ram-Soul in the west, entering in as flesh and returning as spirit;
your radiant sycamore in whose boughs the Sky uplifts her son to his zenith;
your cavern beneath the waters of the sky, from which the earth flood rises;
your bau-souls traversing the two worlds, alighting on their terrestrial forms;
your two horizons of yesterday and tomorrow,
those Twin Lions who encompass time;
your mound of your beginning from which the Benu-bird of the sky took flight;
and all the secret things held to the breast of the waters on that First Occasion.

Bringers of the sky, open your eyes for me;
I receive the clear vision of the Wedjat Eye from your vertex,
and the door leaves of the sky give up their secrets for me.
My eyebrows are the Two Combatants, reconciled in their two powers;
the north and the south entwined before my feet of black and red.
I take up the undiminished sight of the two papyrus wands,
their Cobra-Goddesses taking residence in my hand of enchantments.
My seat is in the filling of the Wedjat Eye,
whose shade governs heaven in its undefeated time.
I enter your portals with the essence of lotus on my skin;
indistinguishable from a god, I suckle from your breast in the sky.

May your bodies within the hallows of the earth be in my sight line;
O Ptah, Tatenen, Lord to the Limits,
rising from the sky in possession of the flood;
I receive the lotus at your nostrils and its fragrance becomes me.
O Sokar, Lord of the Hidden Shrine, you who are upon your sand,
rising in the Henu-Ark as master of the subterranean cavern;
I receive the ascension of your lofty crown whose sun-disk becomes me.
O Ausir, Wennefer, the goodly ruler of the Two Banks,
rising from your lands as the eternal and everlasting;
I receive the green kernel of your body whose immutability becomes me.
O Wepwawet, Opener of the Ways, whose heavenly strides are immeasurable,
rising high upon your standard in the sky, the sacred portals at your feet;
I receive passage from your two ears through all the doors that become me.
O Anpu, He Who is Upon His Mountain, Lord of the Sacred Land,
rising from your mount as the forerunner of those in the west;
I receive the flame of the secret things from your flank which becomes me.
O Djehuty, Lord of the Divine Speech,
Master of Time whose eye encompasses the sky,
rising from the radiance of your silver disk as governor of what its light encircles;
I receive the whole portion of your time which becomes me.

Bringers of the sky, open your ways before me;
I receive the pathways of the Unwearying Stars from your brow,
and the Two Eyes of the Sun-God grant their cognizance to me.
I have traversed the Two Ways in the entourage of the Sun-folk,
whose shouts of acclamation rend the sky at Ra’s coming.
I am acclaimed together with Ra as the mirror of my countenance
shines over the starry vault;
the proclamations of those Imperishable Stars deafen the ears of time.
Time does not know me nor death hear mention of my name;
for I go up in the eastern sky as the light-body of a star,
and I rise up from the mouth of the west as a ba-soul of lofty reflection.

Bringers of the sky, I have entered your open mansion of millions of years;
I have received unconquerable life from your apex,
delivered by your hands called the Imperishable Stars.
The House of Deities has been opened for me;
the Secret Shrine has been opened for me;
the Sacred Mount has been opened for me;
the eastern horizon has been opened for me;
the western sky has been opened for me;
the Unwearying Stars have been opened for me;
the Wedjat Eye at its moment of filling has been opened for me;
the Entourage of Ra has been opened for me;
the Day-Ark in its rising has been opened for me;
the Night-Ark in its setting has been opened for me;
the Henu-Ark on its sledge has been opened for me;
the very circuits traversed by the eternally coursing sun
have been opened for me.

Bringers of the sky, look, see,
and behold my reflection in the mirror of the heavens!
I have received the Never-setting Stars from your grasp,
and my countenance is now indistinguishable from that of an eternal god.
I ascend, I glimmer, and I rise up to take my place in your House of Deities.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Ra Sent Me A Swallow

Ra Sent Me A Swallow

Ra sent me a horizon filling the east with light,
its luminous arms welcoming me as my cradle.
Newly born, I rise up to you O Mother Sky,
your body of gold encompassing my horizon.

Ra sent me a star ascending the eastern vault;
the west is unknown where my striking rays lead the sky.
I call the heavenly bodies to follow in my retinue;
my body of gold and turquoise possessing the light of millions.

Ra sent me a snake swimming the waters above,
his coils the passage of millions of years.
Encircling the abyss of yesterday and today,
he is the devourer whom the earth’s ages fear.

Ra sent me a crocodile to swallow the depths;
his malachite stride crossed years in a single bound.
I have become those jaws dreaded by the abyss,
my valiant bite holding the terror of the midday sun.

Ra sent me a mountain from the depths of the flood,
its peak of gold piercing the hallowed veil of the sky.
Rise O you mountain beyond the realm of wet shadow;
lend me the strength of your vast and enduring years!

Ra sent me a flood to carry me home;
her starry back rose as a shrine for the Elder Sun.
I carried his ba-soul in my unveiled arms;
his light became my succor while traversing unknown waters.

Ra sent me a swallow perched on sky’s edge,
his ruddy face welcoming the mirror of the sun.
Whose countenance shines back from the star-clad vault;
my own rising high to cut the air with golden wings.

Ra sent me a heron of rosy-gold splendor;
his wet feet pulled the ancient earth from its slumber.
Earth’s sleep shall not find me when heron becomes me;
our plumage of dappled light igniting the earth with turquoise.

Ra sent me a lotus from beneath the dusky flood,
its lapis petals kissing the sky-clad body of the sun.
Whose body so rises that it brightens dark horizons;
my visage of divine electrum from which creation blooms.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Sacred Verses (21): Awakening the Hidden Chamber

Awakening the Hidden Chamber.jpg

I bring you sound as the language of becoming;
sound, being the warp and the weft of our beginning,
sprouting from the abyss of the unknown;
sound, the footfall of those tempestuous waters
abounding with the serpents of the deep;
sound, from the milk of your starry Mother,
Her body held up for you when you were the infant sun;
sound, the chorus of your great eye when it opened
to illumine the shadows of the uncreated world;
sound, the light of your eye in its many divisions,
bringing together the two halves of the pristine sky;
sound, the rapturous union of earth and sky,
the Ancient Mound and star-strewn vault of our First Time;
sound, the loins of my Father, awake and held firm in his hand;
sound, the thighs of my Mother, yawning and glistening with golden dew;
sound, Father’s wet shudder as the Imperishable Stars burst forth;
sound, Mother’s call when the two door leaves of heaven are thrown open;
sound, the swallows at the prow of the Night Ark,
calling out the serpent from his coils;
sound, the swallows at the prow of the Day Ark,
conversing with the Sun-God as the horizons unfurl before him;
sound, the light-gorged vessel of my heart in your presence,
having received the turquoise sun upon the skin of my two arms;
sound, reaching out to embrace you like that flared hood of the Cobra-Goddess;
sound, the waves of water and luminescence of your triumphant eye.

I bring my two hands as the eastern and western horizons;
the two horizons, shining as burnished gold when your countenance passes,
your double eye capturing the lapis lazuli of the sky;
the two horizons, wet with the flood of the first beginning,
whose lakes of gold and silver carry aloft your disk and crescent faces;
the two horizons, the Twin Sycamores of lofty and piercing boughs,
standing to face the ruddy dawn when its sun-calf strides between them;
the two horizons, the eastern eye which captures the earth at daybreak,
and the western eye which ensnares the dusky sky in its net;
the two horizons, the tamarisk from which the sky pours,
and the sycamore in which the constellations seek refuge;
the two horizons, the sky-blue lotus of the sun’s ancient birth,
the blue-black mound where his golden hawk alighted;
the two horizons, these two pylons between which my arms extend,
bringing with them the light and darkness of the first beginning.

Hear O Gods the voice of my heart,
resounding in the shadows as the wholesome eye of the dawn!
What I have chased is the injury upon me;
clouding my heart like the blearing of your celestial eye,
closing the door leaves of the sky to my gaze;
but I have thrown open the gates of the sky before you,
the eastern and western veils rent from the lights of your eyes.
In the east your door leaves are thrown wide open with the sun;
your door leaves in the west are thrown wide open at your approach.
The yawning legs of the sky present their verdant mound to you,
its eventide fissure making wet the path your holy feet tread.
I inhale the cloud of your lotus fragrance diffused from your loins;
this the scent of that very first dawn breaking the leaves of the sky.

Hear O Gods the beating of my heart,
the light that unfurls your heart’s ears!
I come on the tide of those ancient waters
where the face of the sun shone forth;
his arousal stirring the body of the flood,
his hand summoning the wind with its commands.
I come as his hand and his command,
my sacral tread bringing with it that light of the first beginning.
Let the lights of my two eyes shine for you in the darkness,
traveling the course of the Unwearying Stars before you.
Let the command of my two lips place the Imperishable Stars in your keep,
their illumination the mooring post where the light of the world gleams.

Hear O Gods the language of the sky,
pregnant with memory through the glance of eternal stars!
She is the Mother who bore the heavens and uplifted the sun,
her breast the sanctuary of untold constellations.
Stretching out her two arms, she cradled the dewy mantle of the sun,
breathing into his mouth the fragrance of your beginning.
Through half moon lips was the vault ordered according to her wish;
the sun becoming the sovereign of the naked and virgin horizon.
Come sun and come horizon, you thigh of bull and perch of falcon,
where the ruddy mantle of the dawn pours out at your feet!
Your language is the color of the midnight sky,
whose sound is the dance of the Unwearying Stars;
rising and falling, yet rising again.

I too rise after I have fallen;
see my body rising as a heron to crown the brow of heaven;
behold my wings of gold riding the wind as a falcon;
hear my words as a swallow breaking the silence of the sky.
For when your earth has fallen beneath my bare feet,
when the stillness of the waters has covered the Two Banks,
I will rise as a star in the eastern portion of heaven;
and my portion shall be the whole of the sun’s course
through the belly of his starry Mother.

Take the lamp of my full face and its light,
having filled the horizons and dazzled the green earth;
its beauty bears the language of that first daybreak,
coming fast over the rolling hills where the sun dances before us.
Let us dance when the Sun-God dances over his soil,
rich in his life and potent in his savor,
with sycamore and tamarisk swaying in our wake!
See how his light plies the southern waters from their dusky slumber;
awakened by the shout of his celestial eye,
they flood the earth’s rolling hills with their ancient memory.

Now you rise and awake like that ancient flood,
bringing upon your youthful skin the blue essence of first light’s lotus.
And who is born from the dew of its unfolding petals;
who becomes the child of the flood from which the sky draws its fire?
I am held at the breast of that sun-clad flower,
to shine my face upon the lonely waters of the world.
It is the sky who opens its two eyes before me,
and the earth who extends his body to receive me.

I bring you sound as the language of becoming
to open up your ears;
I bring you light as the memory of beginning
to reckon millions of years.
I bring you my heart’s constant beating
to fill the empty spaces;
I bring my heart’s most ancient flood
to awaken your dark spaces.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Sacred Verses (20): Entering the Hidden Chamber

Entering the Hidden Chamber

I come now into your presence in darkness,
returning to the wet womb of my mother;
to swim in the flood of the First Beginning
where rose the Primordial Gods upon the sacral mound.
The flood has taken me by the hand and from the veil of death,
which blankets the stars and seeks life’s consolation;
but I have swallowed down those wandering constellations
to become an imperishable star;
darkness, I wander no longer in your void.

The Gods have kept their mount in secret;
within the hallow of all hallows embracing the ancient earth.
Below, black earth, the traveling companion of my bare feet;
Father of all my fathers who alone was with the Sun-God
when He uplifted his brightening eyes from the waters.
I have seen those waters now with my own two eyes;
churning and crashing with terror before the emerging mountain.
These are the secrets of the First Beginning in my keep,
memory being in my confidence, language being my beloved.

Above, sky of lapis lazuli, thighs of gold of my Goddess suspended;
Her belly the dancing ground of myriad constellations;
Her navel the shrine where the Sun-God dazzles in turquoise mantle;
Her black cleft the Mooring Post of the sun’s twilight barque;
Her flooded gap the eastern portal where ascends the nascent sovereign;
Her breasts the Twin Sycamores, the pylons where the Sun-God is suckled;
Her dusky throat the boughs of the tamarisk in which the wind resides;
Her hair cast out into the void as a net of gilt stars;
and these the places where the earth longs to stride,
where all those born of creation’s mound struggle to ascend.

Bellow my feet is that black earth whose arms stretch out to meet Her;
She being the starry Mother from whose flooded thighs we wander.
Born of soil is this corpse we borrow from the hands of our Father;
but we are the sparrows who alight for a precious time,
until the voice of the constellations calls back our stellar body.
We know the ancient language of sparrows passed down
from time’s beginning;
which gave the Gods from their own tongues before our star descended.

Our portion is to recall the language of that First Occasion,
hurled by the Sun-God into those turbulent waters of the void;
His speech becoming the shimmering dance of millions of stars.
These stars belong not only to the primordial Gods;
not only to the Sun-God upon His ocean lotus;
not only to the spray of water making love to the void;
not only to the wind whose kisses find the water wanting;
not only to the blue-black sky hurled far above the soil;
not only to the turquoise beams striking the breast of the earth;
not only to the moon whose crescent lips call out the seasons;
not only to the desert mountains of piercing spires;
not only to the river at flood time following in their wake;
not only to the rosy-gold dawn making ruddy the horizon;
and not only to the Mistress of Heaven in whose keeping they shine.
These stars are our inheritance before earth’s soil knows us;
our two feet hailing from above before they know below.

Our first language is a stellar memory woven from the net of stars;
our heart the Mooring Post where the Ark of the Sun is fastened.
Our first words are that bull’s thigh through which we ascend;
we follow in the luminous entourage vitalizing the dark waters of the sky.
Our first body is that holy star becoming horizon’s guide;
the east which hails us at the breaking of dawn, calling the New Year Home.
Our life upon the earth is the mirror of the Unwearying Stars;
day and night behold our comings and goings in the upper and lower regions.
Our climax of yearning loins is the Milky Way, ornament of heaven’s veil.
This is our veil of our astral wanderings, to which we may return;
these are our stars, our bodies, our Mother’s net of our birthing;
and these are our first words, our first language, our many;
before the coming of one.

My portion is now to remember the reading of the stars,
in whose net of language the memory of humankind is kept;
where we have journeyed in their footsteps,
gathering the knowledge of the Gods;
where we have traveled the course of the Sun-God,
making passage through the waters of the hours below;
where we have become swallows nesting on the Sun’s golden barge,
the keepers of His secret language maintained by heaven’s hallows;
where we have received the cleansing of the Milky Way;
its milk my Mother’s breast, its flood my father’s seed.

Having made my passage through the body of the vault,
I now come to the leaves of earthly doors where the voice of heaven follows.
The scent of myrrh knows my skin and my sweat is its savor;
this fragrance of verdant land and desert;
this embrace of the sycamore and tamarisk;
this love making of earth and sky;
this breath of the morning dew and night wind;
this diadem of the triumphant sun and swollen moon;
this eye of the upper world in its wholeness;
this eye of the lower world in its divisions;
these names of the primordial Gods hidden within the keep of the mound;
I am all of these powers of theirs inherited by the stars of my body,
which shine in the night sky unhindered by the shadows.
See me shine you Gods of the indwelling magic,
and receive this body of light within your bodies of light!

I come now to the leaves of heavenly doors,
entering through the earth of my ancient Father;
His flesh the black soil between my naked toes.
I bear upon my arms the fresh dew of the ruddy dawn,
making me as a babe suckling at his mother’s breast.
The flood of her thighs has brought me to the hidden mound,
where the language of swallows fills my empty ears;
these wet ears of mine now swimming in the primordial chorus:

We came first from the ocean of many
where all stars have their home;
from millions in a net of lights
these swallows alight alone.
Return to the mound of beginnings
is the destiny of the one;
where one becomes the many again,
where the journey is undone.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

He Prays to Set By Night

Set Stela

My beloved is pious when the river floods;
a trail of myrrh following in his footsteps.
Am I a god’s servant then, adhering to those tamarisk feet?
I wait for his boons to rise high on the sacred waters.

My beloved embraces the Gods at the three seasons of the day.
He prays to Amun in the morning; his heart becomes hidden.
He prays to Ptah in the afternoon; his hands absorbed in their labors;
but he prays to Set by night, when his exploits provoke the blazing of stars.

Come with your lamplight to a shrine made ready by the six-day moon;
its myrrh is succor to desert-wearied skin.
This is the royal body of Khensu-Neferhotep, cradled in the lap of stars;
his essence of lotus drawing out prayers from fervent lips.

In the morning your prayers summon the ardor of the Sun-God;
when high noon comes the ears of Ptah imbibe your supplications;
at eventide Set whose passions are roused makes of your tongue His arrow.
My heart becomes the footstool of the Gods, uplifting your unclad toes.

Let the Gods who process the gilt constellations open oracular mouths.
Lord Amun completes His moment when He rises on His mound;
Ptah who is south of His wall encircles the sky as its sunlit master;
Set the raging rules the Red Land with His mighty hand.

Is it your Amun who by morning’s light draws back the dusky veil?
Is it Ptah who opens the lotus on the waters revealing the naked sun?
Is it Set’s fist that governs the bow by which the northern sky is rent?
You answer these with a priest’s devotion as you draw back the bedclothes.

Amun-Ra young bull with sharp horns whose brow knows heaven’s light;
your right eye illumines the earth by day, your left to shine by night.
Adoration of Amun whose skin of gold alights upon His mound;
where darkness clothes the empty waters your hidden light is found.

O Ptah Lord of the Sky whose hearing ear opens south of His walls;
yours are the ears of the midday sun, and those when eventide calls.
May acclaim be yours O beautiful of face who knows the ancient earth;
your two hands move the waters in darkness to give their lotus birth.

Praise of Setesh Lord of Might by whose hand the bow is drawn;
by night who smites the rebel-serpent and with red fist raises dawn.
The Red Land drinks your fury when by storm your voice is known;
the Ark of Ra declares your prowess by twilight where it is shown.

O Gods your footfall knows the shrine of my heart left open to the sky;
whose lapis veil finds me enveloped in myrrh to await the flood.
He comes with full lips immersed in prayer to honor the six-day feast;
whose prophecy declares the filling of the eye high in the lapis vault.

How date palms ride the hot breath of flood season looming at my door;
held open for the passage of gods carried by your devoted mouth.
Stir a breeze for me with praying lips sweet with tamarisk honey;
a flood of their own upon which gods sail during every holy season.

My beloved is pious when his river floods;
he brings three gods with devoted hands.
His body carries the mark of their favors;
boons which multiply as he sheds his royal linen.

My beloved embraces the Gods as the Two Lands know their seasons.
He prays to Amun in the morning; his hidden heart is flooded.
He prays to Ptah in the afternoon; his hands are the leaders of craftsmen;
but he prays to Set by night, when his lover’s deeds fill the Gods with wonder.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Who Comes When Desert Howls

Who Comes When Desert Howls

Alone and without the mantle of the sky,
do my feet dig up the earth beneath the earth;
the cavern where bereft souls are seen to wander,
robbed of the Black Land and its gemstones of blue and green.

What goddess flares above my brow stripped of the moon’s fingers;
his beams do not find her nor does the morning star know her.
Here glowers the veil of sundown devoid of the sun;
where come the lonely bau-souls to await his noble passage.

By day I have crossed the Red Land in search of tamarisk memories;
how intoxicating an evening spent in the company of her branches.
The myrrh of earth’s celestial lady sought me out in my haze of joy;
life that summons the Gods to yearn for mortal breath never taken.

The Gods of the vault never tarry in flesh with starlight for a home;
their vessels of gold never knowing the void of existence without form;
yet their immortal endurance has never made the love that I have made;
their gilded rise as imperishable stars never savor where I have stayed.

In desert’s tempestuous voice I hear the Red One’s rage when he calls;
having wounded the Celestial Eye, his passage makes the sands seethe.
How the green days flee his footfall and the mountains hail his rancor;
their unbending spires endure as the green land meets its grave.

Blue of lapis you cannot meet my eyes nor taste my lips yearning;
green of turquoise cannot kiss my naked toes or clothe my ravenous heart.
Tamarisk and sycamore, your language has no words for my choked ears;
even the willow’s melancholy lips would be invited if I could hear.

Sunrise has no mantle for my loins which carry grave’s clinging veil;
shall the Sun-God’s eyes seek me out in dark hallows of mountain’s keep.
Blue-black shroud you confound my brow bereft of its pure gold;
my diadem of stars seeking other horizons to share its generous lights.

Does beauty find the eyes of the blind or music deafened ears?
My life has left its footsteps in the sand of its fragile years.
Regret you are my comfort in the place of willow’s hands;
the love I have made now fades behind me like those turquoise lands.

Age you have uncovered me when I hid in sweet blue waters;
the flood of youth was fast as it swelled the pride of my thighs.
Can I carry your sweetness in my arms or veil you in my heart;
where its ancient vessel remains unfilled amidst the burning sands.

I have held my ba-soul in arms stripped bare, its wings feebly clinging;
listening to its muted cries like those of a swallow snared in a net.
My enchantments deserted me with my youthful heart;
both tangled in the net of age which knows no remedy or master.

But in my keep I have a name unknown to age or desert’s ears;
before this life became my mother it followed on my heels.
No net can snare my secret name which sails above the wind;
he comes whenever I call him, and knows his hidden power.

Body I do not need you in land of red or green;
youth clinging to what it knows and mind to that unseen.
Let Gods find me journeying in the land where mountain scowls;
where my name travels fast as one who comes when desert howls.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Ibis In the Sky

Ibis in the Sky

Ibis in the sky, of silver crest and moon-dappled plumage,
bring back my heart from those marshes across the river.
What your beak foretells is my youth in green flowering;
a tree of malachite to raise up the florid sky.

Ibis in the sky, whose crown holds the hooked and radiant moon,
find passage for my wet soul from those tangles in dark waters.
What nets have been set against me are severed by a feather;
the luminescence of the northern sky sharp as dawn’s lance.

Ibis in the sky, from east to west your shade passes over the earth;
your companions the entourage of souls hallowed with light.
Sunbeams know them as turquoise striking the brow;
moonlight becomes them when the sun is swallowed in the west.

Ibis in the sky, may I ascend upon your wings as does the Moon-God;
his seat glittering over heaven’s navel when Ra comes home by night.
Your beak sets the Night-Ark upon its stellar course;
the moon itself bowing to your shade when over the vault you pass.

Ibis in the sky, who traverses the Unwearying Stars,
carry for me my heart in your untiring courses.
Where fall some stars beneath the flooding banks,
cause mine to rise like that holy light shining on New Year’s Day.

Ibis in the sky, who returns from Eight-Town with magic in his breast,
lend me your enchantments from the waters of the abyss.
From the Gathering of Eight you weave the fabric of the sky,
which alights in east and west as the yawning and closing horizon.

O ibis in the sky, hebi-bird of dazzling mantle and piercing bill,
you who know the millions of lights spangling the house of heaven;
take my body of mortal flesh and make of it a luminous form,
making its seat as one among those sovereign Imperishable Stars.

O ibis in the sky, whose name when spoken restores heaven’s balance;
bringing the halves of the sky together when north and south are wounded.
You who become the Whole One to shed his grace when eventide falls,
restore for me my flesh with my soul when by night the west it calls.

O ibis in the sky, whose matchless grace knows no seed of darkness;
your seat in the Wedjat Eye being filled with light where gods come calling.
Bring home for my ba-soul a portion of your wholesome light expanding;
to fill the sky where dwells my heart in the train of the Unwearying Stars.

O ibis in the sky, Lord of Eight-Town when on earth you alight,
taking the green of the Two Banks in your just grasp;
seize the warp of my heart and the weft of my Ka to knot the eternal sky;
making union of those Two Combatants in whose fists justice hides.

Ibis in the sky, upon whose crest the noble moon rises;
your portion of light is before you, through which you illumine the world.
Behind you sets the Moon-God in his predestined time;
let me rise and set with you upon the bosom of the predawn sky.

Ibis in the sky who holds me aloft in his bill of constant light;
with your Unwearying Stars you crown me to send me up by night.
A heart of malachite you have fashioned from a flame at rest;
to take its home in eternal sky where you have woven a nest.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

When Sokar Lifts Me Up

When Sokar Lifts Mer

In the mysterious region where terror swims,
the Gods of twilight come to the hidden mound;
where the sky of nocturnal hours is torn,
its mount of the beginning surpassing the veil.

Who is this god rending the fabric of the midnight sky,
who enters the Secret Shrine effusing heavenly myrrh?
To speak His name is to order the vault with a shout;
His name of Sokar splitting the brow of the celestial below.

This is where the dead come wrapped in a shroud
to receive the earth at the Place of the Hauling;
where the Unwearying Stars ornament the roof of the Duat,
opening up for the footfall of their lord.

Here the Sun-God travels to receive His ba by night;
His ram-soul becoming the fruit of gold birthed by secret fire.
Whose flame is lighted in the sky to give the Sun his mantle?
To call the name of Sokar is to rend night’s stifling veil.

Sokar Lord of the Mysterious Region has claimed the western sky;
His double wings astride two banks where Ra in weakness comes.
The ba-soul of this Great God ascends at Sokar’s stellar call;
and this is where all sleeping souls rise when by night they fall.

I was given a shroud by the Goddess of Weaving;
Her weft of magic fell from the sky to clothe me in its light.
The Duat’s eyes can see me now ascending tightly bound;
but why should I need a clinging shroud when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a spear of heavenly metal by the two great hands of Ptah;
His craft beyond reproach has seeded the sky with constellations.
O Ptah Lord of the Sky whose spear defeats the serpent’s coils;
why should I need a spear when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a lotus by the Lion Son of Ra’s great flaming eye;
His perfume found me resting soundly on the western shore.
The petals in which the Sun is hidden revivified my senses;
but why should I need a lotus when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a collar of gold fashioned by the Sun’s rays dawning;
the east being filled with glittering praise from sky’s dazzling eye.
Ra Himself placed turquoise charms about my flaxen throat;
but why should I need a collar of gold when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a knot of red jasper to hang about my neck;
the magic savor of the Goddess Auset which drives the demons aground.
Circle me with your blood O Goddess and make my members strong;
but why should I need a knot of jasper when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a golden pillar to raise me from the earth;
its rungs like a ladder guided feet to abounding stars imperishable.
Constellations saw my ladder pierce the starry veil;
but why should I need a pillar of gold when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a heart of ruddy stone which glistens in the moon;
his luminous rays to fall in grace to guide me as a bird.
My heart could soar like that Benu-bird of Ra’s most glorious soul;
but why should I need a heart of stone when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a headrest of venerable metal which fell from the morning sky;
the magic of the world above to carry me to the Sun.
Sky’s potent curve could shield my head from harm above or below;
but why should I need a headrest in the clouds when Sokar lifts me up?

I was given a coffin of tamarisk wood in which my limbs could rest;
the lid was the vault of heaven’s mother clad in unwearying stars.
Her incomparable beauty sees the blushing stars falling;
why should I need a coffin in the sky when Sokar lifts me up?

O Sokar Lord of the Hidden Shrine whose watery region becomes you;
I give you praise whose voice strikes awe when it sounds in the Henu Barque!

Fists beat breasts in the sky when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The western mount trembles by night when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The eastern gap is further torn when you rise;
may I rise with you!
Your gold becomes the turquoise of the earth when you rise;
may I rise with you!
Your atef-crown stretches up through the clouds when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The blood of the rebel-serpent fills the sky when you rise;
may I rise with you!
West’s secret mound tears the Duat when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The anet-fish leads the waters when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The sparrowhawk of gold alights when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The horns of the orxy rut when you rise;
may I rise with you!
The Henu Barque cuts through the banks of stars when you rise;
may I rise with you!
All the bau-souls of the Sacred West rise when you rise;
may I rise with you!

O Lord who is upon your sand, radiant of face in the twilight hour,
your black mound finds me as a dweller upon the banks;
I come forth when your shouts call the Sun from his hallows,
when the east becomes your cleft of gold where the souls are reborn.

I was given the earth in the west and the sky in the east;
the mound where the Sun-God rests and the vault where His mirror shines.
How beautiful to taste black earth and smell the reborn sky;
but why should I need earth or sky when Sokar lifts me up.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa