Sacred Verses (35): What Do You Hear / I Hear the Gods

What Do You Hear

What do you hear in that hour they call twilight;
stars that have overcome the horizon
with cloaks of blue and gold,
who in their luminescent hands hold
the departed spirits of the earth below;
they reach your ears with messages from the sky,
opening the doors we enter when we die;
they have for ears and eyes the patterns
of souls rising for the dance,
beheld by the earth in silent awe.

I hear the Gods who weave their twilight home;
the gold that beckons eyes to horizon’s fire,
her breast pointed high to clasp spirit’s wings;
they who reach the crimson-painted clouds,
before the darkness finds them
to blanket their ascent.
These mysteries show their colors to my eyes,
as I watch for the spirits who come to claim the skies.

What do you hear when the sycamore sways;
the past who in his fingers holds
the lovers who have scratched their names
on your breast of gold;
with a silver mirror to dress your eyes,
and a shadow of copper where your spirit flies.
He is a past of gilded fabric,
whose shimmer rekindles yesterday in his garden;
of trees that count your forgotten years,
when dusky soil has taken your flesh and tears.

I hear the Gods who have woven the earth;
by their hands of gold and brow of stars,
who came before the green beneath us grew;
with their language of sparrow and morning star,
upon whose breezes the waters of beginning stirred.
I find in the mountains the stone and metals of their tongue,
speaking clear to the coming dawn;
she parts her veil for the arousal of those peaks,
whose lips seek a turquoise embrace
from that mouth into which he speaks.

What do you hear when the cornflower opens;
the thread of life calling from the mantle of the dead,
where flesh and bone are buried
with a wreath upon his head;
your lover called youth and time,
endless it seems by dawn;
standing green with spring’s fair blooms,
until by dusk they are gone.
I knew him to be a swallow on the air
who carried me to pasture, to orchard and home;
this wreath of sky-blue flowers on my brow,
whose beauty like daybreak was destined to roam.

I hear the Gods as they dance in their orchards;
trees of myrrh who commune with the acacia,
of ancient leaves and boughs;
they break open the sky with their ageless stories,
with fruit that speaks a stellar tongue.
This language is the memory of many
before the one came;
she tells the fruit of legions
before his jealous claim.
I read with open eyes and hear with open ears
the music of the sky that reckons
the memory of myriad years.

What do you hear when your soul flies;
your wings calling the winds their home,
above the place where mountains open their peaks;
where he catches the gaze of the west as it sees,
as the voice of the vault clearly speaks.
Is this where you find your flesh and your bones,
renewed in a western shrine;
where before you have gone the dreams of living men,
taken as lovers by time.
This place where go the feet of dreams
with lovers on his brow,
we call the thighs of sacred death
before whom our dreams bow.

I hear the Gods in their shrine called memory,
from whose breast the ancient tongues are nourished;
with their skies and trees and myriad fields
traversed by the wings of their stellar spirits.
This is where we go when the hour called twilight ripens,
when she reaches out her hand
to take back the dust of her ages.

This is where I go when my flesh tires of bone;
and these are the Gods who meet me with gold
when the dusky veil opens to welcome me home.
I hear with open ears and see with open eyes
the chanting of the fields where death’s mantle unravels;
I hear with open ears and see with open eyes
the courses of many that govern life’s travels,
by whose hands the earth meets the skies.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

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