My Tomb Is On This Shore

My Tomb Is On This Shore

My tomb is on this shore,
in the place where the earth is swallowed by the sky;
His nakedness is covered by Her imperishable stars
for the eyes of swallows ascending the western vault.
And my nakedness?
His loins are awakened by the flowers of the sky;
beaten gold and ruddy copper flash as His girdle,
growing from a garden the hands of the Gods have planted;
cornflower and lotus unfurling their bright petals,
lighting a lamp before him
in the darkness of the desert’s edge.

I call on the Lord of the Rivers
to meet me by the water’s mouth;
Sebek Who is in the Water,
the Great Crocodile beautiful of forms;
who tears the sky with His double plumes,
appearing in the east as the Lord of Bakhu-Mountain.
This mountain is my destination, the sky rent above its peak;
and it is this crocodile of flashing white teeth
who makes a gap for my wings to enter.

My tomb is on this shore,
at the junction between the earth and sky;
He beholds the entourage of jabirus dancing
in their pilgrimage through that torn and glimmering veil.
And my pilgrimage?
His dance is the ascension of lamps in heaven’s lap,
whose yawning places him at the gate of a stellar home;
the tireless stars of generations hailing,
making of their song a guide for the wings of souls.
I answer when my ears of twilight are opened,
and my mouth breathes the breath the crocodile has woven.

I call on that Crocodile great of terror
to meet me by the desert’s mouth;
Sebek Who is Ruler of the Desert Edge,
whose teeth and claws reveal the flashing of the sun;
He coming on the dark waters to predict light,
crossing waterways as the sky flees His shadow.
These waterways are my destination, this Shadow my guide;
and I am brought up by the One Who Flies to the Skies,
who makes the starry vault a road for my wings.

My tomb is on this shore
in the place where the earth gives way to the sky;
His nakedness is revealed as the pathway of stars
for the eyes of herons rising on the eastern ladder.
And my nakedness?
His brow is crowned by the crest of the sky;
striking flame and sun’s eye are His mantle,
shooting forth from a horizon the Gods have opened;
thigh of bull and crocodile’s tail unveil their power,
lighting a lamp before Him
in the darkness of the sky’s edge.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Advertisements

Ateruw / I Will Never Let Them Go

Ateruw

They glide past my eyes on either side,
these jewels the Gods dropped one by one
into the floodwaters;
the finest gold, turquoise, and malachite,
catching the sun’s hands by the tips of their fingers;
these jewels the Gods dropped one by one
into the river they love.

I have loved, too, as I dropped my body for you,
wrapped in dazzling white linen
on the breath of a festival day;
taking to the waters that drew near to kiss me,
as I imagined your skin drawing near in perfection.
Ateruw is the name of this flood that knows my name,
gliding past my eyes on either side.

I could tell the eyes of the sky
that the Earth-God has summoned me;
His arms flashing with turquoise,
His limbs of burnished gold making a mirror of my skin;
but my hands caught the river
in their eager net of flesh,
with kisses and devotion sliding beneath his surface.

They glide past my eyes on either side,
these prayers my lips have woven one by one;
into the flood they have slipped with desire,
to flash beneath the surface for my hungry net.
Rosy gold and most holy stone have dropped from my sight,
their words of value still singing to my ears;
and I will never let them go, once their song has faded.

I have sung songs the sacred river knows,
wrapped in heady myrrh on a festival day.
Their words catch the Gods in a net of perfume,
carried on sandalwood with jasmine flowers in bloom.
They are the jewels that draw near in perfection,
as other voices slip through the holes my net leaves;
and I will never let them go, once their time has ended.

I could tell the ears of the river
that the Sky-Goddess has summoned me;
Her thighs embraced by a canopy of stars,
Her golden breasts full for my hungry lips;
but my hands caught the clouds
in their quick net of lust,
with my spirit and intentions lost beneath his surface.

They glide past my eyes on either side,
these flowers the Gods dropped one by one
into their earthly garden;
carnelian, jasper, and real lapis lazuli,
catching the breath of the sky by the tip of Her tongue;
these jewels the Gods have let slip by me,
one by one into the river they love.

I have loved, too, as I dropped my shadow for you,
wrapped in a heart of fiery red stone
on the glare of a midsummer day;
taking to the holy sycamore that drew near to kiss me,
as I imagined your soul drawing near in perfection.
Ateruw is the name of this vessel that holds me,
gliding past my eyes on either side.

I could tell the lips of the earth
that the Gods have summoned me;
their souls of turquoise like flames rising high,
their wings of lapis lazuli holding the sun in His mirror;
but my hands caught the western mountains
in their net of flesh and bone,
with my heart and shadow lost beneath his surface.

I have held the jewels the Gods once held,
wrapped in their mysteries
on the skin of a festival day;
taking to the waters that slip by the net of my eyes,
tempting my hands with perfection as they draw near.
They are the words my soul’s ears will always hear,
and I will never let them go, once my heart has mended.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Sacred Verses (37): May the Gods Open A Door

May the Gods Open A Door

I awake to a life hidden
behind the world’s dusky veil;
she finds me as my mother,
rising up between her loins of celestial metal.
What finds me is our cavern of beginnings,
where swim the wings of souls;
what finds me is our lake in the nether sky,
where fly the shadows charged by heaven’s breast.
May the Gods open a door
for the passage of my solar wings;
may the Gods open a door
for the breath my mother sings.

My eyes tread the courses of the stars
untiring in their house of north;
in this direction I am taken by them
to the region where horizons gaze;
to behold our bodies glittering
with skins of gold and precious stone.
I am open in the direction of the ever-rising sun,
with brows of lapis lazuli curving on heaven’s crown.
May the Gods open the sky
for my flesh of stellar design;
may the Gods open the sky
for these shining wings of mine.

It is from the soil I swell with malachite presence,
my naked feet known to the sacral ground below;
he knows my seed of green
from which his mighty sycamore has grown;
he knows my heady scent of myrrh
from which his power is sewn.
I now behold green jasper, inhale breath of myrrh;
knowing the seeds of tomorrow, and all the seeds that were.
May the Gods open the earth
for my feet of stone and seed;
may the Gods open the earth
for these feet to take their lead.

I have come on voice of sky,
upon celestial breath;
he recounts the moment of my birth;
his open arms take my death;
he has given his hallows beneath ancient trees,
whose branches foretell my years with seeing leaves.
I come to receive a mantle of stone,
alighting as a swallow in the boughs I call home.
May the Gods open a field
for my wings as they grow;
May the Gods open a field
for my enchantments that flow.

Now I come to a river of luminous spirit
spreading the loins of the eastern horizon.
She is a flower in the river of the sky,
opening her wet petals for my loins as they fly;
she is a mother of gleaming turquoise breast,
holding the sun tightly in her woven gold nest.
I am now wet as the day I was born,
reared on milk of sky, fresh on the breast of morning.
May the Gods open a lotus
for my face of youthful power;
may the Gods open a lotus
for my mirror of the dawning hour.

I came from the cleft of my mother,
from the seed my father spilled;
hers is the sacred cavern
from manhood of earth being filled.
His are the eyes that see me spring
at sacred daybreak on his bank;
hers are the lips the sun hears sing
when I ascend her gilded flank.
May the Gods open a body
for my wings to take their flight;
may the Gods open a body
for my dawn and star by night.

My skin recalls his bones when morning comes,
and when night falls he hears the summons of his blood;
these the fragile gifts of earth,
the sacral river and her mud.
I swim with the sky as the east is born,
and by the west I travel as his daylight is shorn.
The feet that move me are of earth, of tree and holy peak;
the arms that keep me are of sky, the mansion earth’s eyes seek.
May the Gods open a soul
for these bones to open their way;
may the Gods open a soul
for my coming forth by day.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Sacred Verses (33): I Walk With Spirits

I Walk With Spirits

I walk with the desert;
he is the red land of my sorrow and regret,
clinging to my feet as the sand of ages past;
he stretches out not as a lover,
but as a debtor demanding recompense.
My sky takes me by the hand in the face of those sands,
and on the distant horizon I behold the mirror of water;
she is the mother of my new life, waiting;
so I have come back to the place where my feet began.

I walk with the trees,
remembering the yew of my boyhood,
whose words of the future heralded my past;
to be reborn through memory would be my mountain to climb.
He has boughs of yesterday and leaves of tomorrow,
my yew who keeps our past and remembers our future;
older than the vault of the sky, his prophecies hold our beginning.
Through him I recall the breath of myrrh, the Sacred Ones who travel;
they are the Gods who offered me my lungs, who gave me the Ancestral breath.
He is the father of my new memory, enduring;
so I have come back to the place where my history began.

I walk with the river;
she rushes over my feet to find me my spirit,
who travels along the watery road where life and death mingle.
Has she swallowed the crocodiles that wait in the darkness,
my pains of sharp teeth who surface to remind me;
or has she drowned them, those sorrows of impenetrable scales,
my boyhood and wayward youth who hunger to surface.
But I will not find them, not in the shallows where the lotus rises;
he pushes up his face from the mud to drink the golden light.
This is what spirits do when they find darkness,
and this is what my spirit becomes when first light catches his eyes.
He is the lotus that came from my beginning, opening;
so I have come back to where my spirit began.

I walk with my body,
who carries the scars of my mother and father upon him;
for we all wear our history like clothes,
putting some on with relish and discarding others;
how my wardrobe has ransomed my heart for their promises.
I had the scarf of youth and the boots of pleasure,
now worn out like my hands, who carry my heart in thin fingers.
I will not now count the brilliant fabrics I possessed,
now that my body moves sky-clad beneath a mantle of stars;
for this is where I came from, and where you who read me were born.
My stars take me by the fingers and lead me to sky’s shelter;
she is the lapis womb whose waters receive me, swimming;
so I have come back to where my flesh began.

I walk with my lovers;
they give me their manhood and mine, their skin and consolation.
I have had them by moonlight, where my lips taste ivory beams;
I have had them by daybreak, where the sun strikes naked thighs with gold.
I have heard the promises of sages warning of the flesh;
where are their bones now?
I have listened to the sacral threats of ages;
have their fears ever shown us how?
Now I take you with me, all you lovers from my bed;
in memory you live again, on lips and breath and kisses.
You have taught me how precious a gift life is;
shorter than twilight, and sweeter than vain promises or threats.
You are the thighs my spirit enters, renewing;
so I have come back to where my heart began.

I walk with my heart,
gleaming even after nightfall as a stone of sanguine carnelian;
he holds the sun between his lips even after sundown.
He has been lost in a bramble where my hopes found him,
as all hearts are found even when shade takes them.
Shade, you are a gale in the hands of time,
but you make the heart endure with its fragile light;
it is light that bends like a sapling, yet withstands the gale of experience.
Now I imbibe the wind at my back, tasting what life has given me;
and it is still life as it pours from one vessel to another.
He is the container of the sun in which I set, rising;
so I have come back to where my light began.

I walk with swallows,
those little birds of great flight who soar over seas;
their untiring wings find me wherever I wander.
Give me your cloaks of lapis lazuli, your hood of blood red;
and give me your morning call to summon the potent sun.
Yours is the language of time’s beginning where men are made;
yours is sight of sunbeams upheld by wings of shade.
I open my body to let my spirit fly with you;
and this is where we all travel once our skins are shed.
You are the voices of earth that mingle with heaven, flying;
so I have come back to where my speech began.

I walk with the dead;
they came before me with the rising sun,
and they departed when the song of eventide ended.
They are my mothers and my fathers, my conscience and memory;
I remember we came from many, no matter how the one howls.
It is the Ancestors who keep me in the language of their names;
their names are the warp and weft from which our future weaves.
I make my heart a libation from which my past drinks,
while my future is a stream of memories pouring from history’s bones.
I open my memory to let my body become you;
and this is where we multiply once we set our memory free.
You are the ages past from where I hail, living;
so I have come back to where my future began.

I walk with spirits,
who pass through the doors of flesh and bone,
who know where the earth meets the sky;
they know the caverns in the ever-standing mountains,
the portals of imperishable stars flashing.
Their river is a road in the nether sky, where wings of sparrows tread;
they make of the earth a memory, and from sky they make a bed.
How soft their whisper in half-forgotten words, I hear with open heart;
how our past comes calling when our spirit makes a start.
My shadow takes my fingers and leads me to a door;
the earth becomes my lintel as the sky becomes my floor.
You are the memory of me time keeps, returning;
so I have come back to where my travels began.

I walk with the Gods;
they came before us with the rising waters,
and they have never departed, even as our memory faded.
They are our mothers and fathers, our beginning and our end;
and I remember we came from many, no matter how the one howls.
You found me when I was naked on the other shore;
your doors in the sky you opened, where my feet of the earth could drink.
The desert of my memory becomes a field of turquoise,
where the sycamore and tamarisk hold the florid sky.
I am the memory of leaves and branches glistening in the green;
now the sparrows find me as a home for the weary vault.
Come Gods, you stellar wings of earth and sky;
lift up my bones of memory where stars make bright their doors.
I open up my body to let my memory become you;
and this is where immortality finds us once we set our memory free.
You are creation’s waters where spirits hail, ascending;
so I have come back to where my soul began.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Stronger Than the Current / Beautiful Crocodile

Stronger Than the Current

When the holy river comes for me
he is a raging nest of crocodiles in my path;
what light the stars shone was consumed
by their cavernous bellies;
the stars of the north which rose for me;
the Bull’s Thigh which sent me a ladder,
glinting upon my lapis horizon;
a torch which showered molten gold upon my feet.
These are the treasures the sky gave me,
dressed in their luminous mantle;
and I too wore that cloak of stars on my shoulders,
until the river came with his terrors.

This flood pulls down the horizon from my brow,
coming down from between the mountains to take me.
In his wet hands like a lover I fall,
opening my heart to be devoured by the depths;
but this heart of mine is stronger than the current,
a stone of malachite with his flint edge.

Beautiful crocodile, I taste your bite and inhale your savor,
your gold, and your carnelian eyes;
you bring me my death, and I bring you my smile;
for this body you take is not the one in which I travel.
Beautiful crocodile, I take your bite for a lover,
and my heart grows back as a malachite stone.
These are the treasures the dark flood has given me,
what create or destroy the passions of men.

When your holy body comes for me
he is a torch of fragrant cedar in the arms of the wind;
his navel of electrum shines through the veil
twilight brings with his whisper.
I am confounded by your myrrh worn like a garland;
I am suspended from your neck as a chain of gold;
and who seeks me out but a heart of malachite
with his flint edge,
that beautiful crocodile with his ecstatic bite.
A stream of moonlight shone from my hand,
drawn from your stellar skin I had by heaven’s gaze;
these are the treasures the earth gave me,
stripped of his dusky mantle;
and I too wore that cloak of moonlight on my shoulders,
until the sun came with his commands.

Beautiful crocodile, I wear your skin and know your scales,
your teeth, and your potent aura;
you bring me my second life, and I bring you my power;
for this heart you take is not the one in which I travel.
Beautiful crocodile, I take your flesh for a lover,
and my will grows back as a malachite stone.
These are the treasures the dark night has given me,
what create or destroy the futures of men.

When the holy flood returns for me
he is a shady sycamore in my path;
what light the stars shine is sheltered in his branches;
the northern stars that rise for my brow,
the Bull’s Thigh that opens my eyes;
the heron of luminous crest
surpassing twilight’s grasp;
a torch of fine gold appearing in east’s mirror,
whose gaze falls upon my feet ascending.
These are the treasures the sky gives me,
dressed in their eternal mantle;
and I too wear that cloak of stars on my shoulders,
until the river comes with his darkness.

This flood brings up the horizon to my brow,
rushing up from between his thighs to take me.
In his wet hands like a lover I fall,
opening my heart to be devoured by the depths;
but this heart of mine is stronger than the current,
a stone of malachite with his flint edge.

Beautiful crocodile, I taste your vigor and inhale your desire,
your turquoise, and your thighs of gold;
you bring me my life, and I bring you my vessel;
for this body you take is not the one in which I travel.
Beautiful crocodile, I take your soul for a lover,
and my heart grows back as a malachite stone.
These are the treasures the dark flood has given me,
what create or destroy the eternities of men.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

My Ba-Soul Found A Home

My Ba-Soul Found A Home

My body found a home
on the day the earth was opened;
he made a sanctuary for me
and filled it with sand.
His gale was the mourning of time
tearing through the lonely peaks;
that one western peak still lit by the dying sun.
Do they come to shed tears for me,
these winds, these sands, these peaks;
or do they proclaim time as the victor,
whose unstoppable footfall makes pilgrimage
to every door.

My image found a home
with blue marguerites on gold;
they flashed for my hidden eyes
against a shroud like the empty sky.
While the mountains reach to embrace her-
she stretching naked above-
my hands find garlands of cornflowers
chanting in heavenly tones.
Do all their petals sing for me,
the cornflower, lotus, and mandrake;
or do they bid the living to live,
to wear well life’s fragile garland.

My ren-name found a home
like a nest in your memory,
where swallows twitter the words
the Gods wove on my mother’s tongue.
Speaking the colors of dawn- never of sunset-
you bring back my steps
to the gate of the eastern sky;
he receives me with a flourish of music
from your garden.
I hear the acclamation of sycamores
as my name darts between them;
my memory comes on swallow’s wings
to lift your heart to my eaves.
Do they always speak of me,
the sycamore, acacia, and willow;
or do they speak of life in their boughs,
swept up by the breath of the wind when he blows.

My ab-heart found a home
where the heron flies by day;
on his breast where the sun is born,
where the turquoise of sunrise hails.
I see with carnelian eyes and hear with jasper ears,
when the flight of spirits opens the sky
to close west’s hungry eyes.
Find me a crest, a wing, a talon;
for I have heard every bird with my ears,
and seen their trek with my eyes.
There is no clothing on the sky
when my heart beats below her;
she makes bright with starry form
my naked loins inside her.
Do they shine for me,
these stars, these lights, these lamps;
or do they tell of heaven’s hold
on earth’s ever-changing skin.

My ka-double found a home
where the ancient Gods abide;
whose immortal bodies share their life
from the flood where life began.
I was with them- all these Gods-
before the heavens and earth existed;
and I shall rise with their enduring stars
beyond the life of the world.
Deny or receive them, these Gods live,
whose forms may not be counted;
and I shall live with them in the vault
where travel the uncountable stars.
Do they travel for you in the sky,
these Gods, these stars, these ages;
or do they endure without our will
to shine for creation’s eyes.

My ba-soul found a home
in the place where jabirus walk;
their trail in the florid veil beckons wide,
a beacon of dancing flame.
The door was closed behind him
when twilight’s mouth was opened;
another door before his eyes
made wings from the dying sky.
I chase the rising stars by night,
their gates hold west at bay;
I make the dawn my gilded flight,
my corpse to rest by day.
Do they behold my corpse when he sleeps,
these birds of stellar design;
or do they see a changeless light
these eyes can see as mine.

My khaibit-shadow found a home
beside the swollen river,
whose tongue of beginnings speaks my name
when the nether waters rise.
I am this god who rises
from death’s terrestrial cavern;
to pass through the lapis veil above
without time’s heavy shroud.
Do not look for me in earth or tomb
where corpses go to slumber;
for I like the Gods pass through these doors
to claim the untiring sky.
Will you look for me within these hands,
this earth, this tomb, this corpse;
or will you see me as I soar,
a shade of the starry mantle.

My sekhem-power found a home
between the mountain’s thighs;
her gap in waiting held me tight
where the seed of the sun is born.
She glimmers for me with gold and electrum,
with lapis and turquoise stones;
these gods to become my flesh,
these spirits to become my bones.
You wear me like a garland of spring
whose poppies raise you high;
I throb as that drum between your legs
which reaches for the sky.
Does he come for me at dawn,
your spring, your drum, your garland;
or does he rise on the life within him
that knows the immortal cry.

My effective-akh found a home
in the nether marsh of light;
his radiant crest brought me up
where the Eye of the Sun is woken.
My plumes of dappled luster
foretell the day when dusk has fallen;
my eyes display the body of the sun
in whose mirror I am reflected.
Do not search the earth for me,
the banks, the fields, or mountains;
the horizons alone tell my story
every day from season to season.
Where I travel there are no corpses,
no skin or bones and blood;
for I am now a radiant form
above earth’s fragile mantle.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Bring Me the Red Cloth

Bring Me the Red Cloth (2)

Where my feet have traveled leaves the dust upon them;
those mountains yonder, over whose peaks the spirits hover,
between whose amber towers the swallows make pilgrimage.
I hear their animated conversation beneath the wind’s howl,
who weaves his forecast for the wings of hawks and sparrows.
They have come the way I have come, though I on feet and they on air;
we tread the roads above and below, our end the same in time’s keeping.

But I require a body of spirit when that of flesh has tired;
I know my blood and I know my bones, taken by the desert hallows.
Tears and cornflowers have given my toes ornaments of the sky;
shall I now drift on forget-me-nots, or take the wings of poppies?
I would rather have the lotus with me when dusk closes his inevitable hand.

Bring me a torch to brighten my way, and tell dusk to flee like a shadow.
There are sunbeams in my hand through which the morning is born;
let me be one of those blinking lances piercing the flank of the veil;
to know my mother’s thighs of heaven and shine with the face of her sun.

Bring me sandals for my pilgrim’s feet, and tell the Gods to open a road.
There are the doors of the sky through which birds ascend;
let me be a swallow of red breast and red cowl, of lapis wing and foot;
to grapple the sky and proclaim the clouds as my call opens wide the doors.

Bring me a scepter of fine gold for my hand, and tell the sky to obey me.
There are the clouds and their rains before me, the offerings of the vault;
let me be a hawk of gilded form and feather, of striking light above the surface;
to appear through the rivers of the sky as master of all the waters know.

Bring me horizon’s eyes for my brow, and tell the dawn to behold me.
There is the east and there is the west, whose doors know spirit’s wings;
let me be a falcon of divine luminescence, of wholesome sight and knowledge;
to foresee the morning after night’s bleary fall where vision becomes my apex.

Bring me a mount of electrum for my perch, and tell the abyss to retreat.
There are dark waters where eternity dwells, a sea of beginning’s making;
let me be a heron of dazzling white crest, of shimmering eye and bill;
to awaken the eye of horizon’s becoming in east where I am sired.

Bring me a rudder for my boat of the sky, and tell the waters to fear me.
There is the north and there is the south, of wind and water rushing;
let me be a holy crocodile, of malachite jaw and carnelian stare;
to cut through the depths of untamed floods where stealth and speed become me.

Bring me the breath of the Sun-God, and tell darkness he has his master.
There is the beginning and there is the end, an ocean without horizon;
let me be that lotus of celestial view, of fiery crown and center;
to break the surface with my copper mirror as first light’s face appears.

Bring me the red cloth of my beginning, and tell my mother to bear me.
There is seed and there is a womb, a father and mother within me;
let me be that child in his trappings, an image of eternal design;
to knit together my flesh and my bones as spirit meets its makers.

I require a new beginning once my end has found me;
I know my slumber and my blindness, when land becomes my lover.
Shroud and coffin have given my loins ornaments of the soil;
shall I now be still with the willow, or have sycamore boughs as my cradle?
I would rather have the lotus with me when earth takes me in hand.

Where my feet have traveled leaves the stars upon them;
those constellations yonder, in whose spheres the spirits glimmer,
in whose wake I circumnavigate the sky.
I behold their untiring dance in the north, where souls on wings ascend;
their passage from the ground below makes death a stellar path.
They have come the way I have come, though I on feet and they on air;
we tread the roads above and below, our end the same in time’s keeping.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Do His Hands Touch the Sky

Do His Hands Touch the Sky(1)

Through the rustling branches of the tamarisk I hear
the voice of that goddess who brings up hearts in her hands;
her cascade of water entices me to sit beside the thigh of the sun,
to which the souls of the earth are drawn in their twilight season.

With cupped hands I drink from the flood of her golden breast,
the life she gives striking the desert of my lips as turquoise.
I drink the memory of precious stone where my youth is kept;
beneath that perpetual sky I find the wings of my fledgling ba.

O my ba-soul dressed in the glimmering dawn,
where the waters of life seek out worthy lips;
my goddess of the east arrays you in cornflower blue
with her arms of encircling gold;
just as she does for the shoulders of the naked sun,
her cloak of dappled plumage becomes your eastern power.

The heron becomes you, whose double plume stirs the horizons;
he knows the essence of lotus that breathes through his wings.
Those spirits in the drifting sky chirp your name as Ra of the heights,
who has come from the beginning with sunbeams for his colors.

O my ba-soul powered by the undaunted wind,
where the breath of the vault revivifies worthy lungs;
my goddess of the north hoists a sail for you
with her arms of turquoise enchantments;
just as she does for the boat of the twilight sun,
her fabric of swift moving clouds becomes your northern power.

Do his hands touch the sky, this ba of mine in starry flight;
for I have seen the Bull’s Thigh in a veil worn high, in lofty waters suspended.
His wholesome eyes climb that ladder in the sky, on wing of north ascending;
this ba of mine with indestructible wings to join the zenith of lights.

O my ba-soul drawn forth by the gap in the sky,
where the mouth of the sycamore swallows worthy spirits;
my goddess of the west unveils her thighs for you
with her arms of rising constellations;
just as she does for the face of the nighttime sun,
her womb of twelve hours becomes your western power.

I began as a ram-soul of the ancient earth driving the light before me;
whose flickering form like the wings of sparrows caught the evening air.
My skin of myrrh knows the history of the sky, her breath of time and memory;
where the body of the earth is born again on the wings of the eastern beacon.

O my ba-soul clad in the spring of that heavenly sycamore,
where the breast of the sky fills worthy hearts;
my goddess of the south opens the flood for you
with her arms of lapis renewal;
just as she does for the loins of the potent sun,
her cleft of celestial waters becomes your southern power.

I do not end as a corpse planted in the keep of the earth,
nor can the hallows of the west trap me behind her dusky shutters;
they are thrown wide open by the span of my wings of the horizon,
from which the sun rises to the netherworld’s acclaim.

Through the rustling branches of the sycamore I hear
the voice of that goddess who brings up spirits in her hands;
her song of birds in flight draws me down beside the thigh of the sky,
to which the souls of the earth are drawn in their twilight season.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

Sacred Verses (29): In the Field of Offerings / the Gods Have Reared Upon Their Words

Field of Offerings.jpg

Clothed in white, my spirit sails the new horizon
where memory has never been forgotten,
in the place where the face of the northern sky blushes with stars;
theirs are remembrances of the first words ever spoken,
heard now with my ears upon the gusts that celebrate the sunrise.
“You remember where you sailed from”, they whisper behind my damp ears,
“from that lofty sycamore of memory which stretched the womb of the sky;
she yawned for you with her mouth in the evening,
and took you in with her flood to ride the waters where the sun descends.
The sun is your companion, like memory, which rises and falls
throughout the ages; but the knowledge he imparts is the eternal becoming,
which governs all things the Gods have reared upon their words.

“Gods are this forthcoming with the sun,
imbibing his memories as beams of light,
then rearing them as language in the turquoise boughs of the sycamore.
Her branches are the ages and her leaves every name ever spoken;
yours are reckoned with their malachite and green of jasper,
their turquoise of the sky whose constellations spell out your knowledge.
You have heard this knowledge where you sailed from,
the thighs of your Mother in the east, which bestowed you your beginning.
Listen to your mother who resides in the east,
for hers are the lips that know the memories of the sun
in his millions of circuits through her womb;
she who has counted them and knows their vast enchantments.
How many circuits and how many cycles has your spirit reckoned?
Look to the stars traversing their river in the sky,
in whose sacred depths the words of memory remain forever”.

I take my oar in hand across the waters;
their azure fills my eyes with the sky, my heart with the depths.
Gazing up to meet my Mother with fresh eyes and wet ears,
I inhale the savor of this Field of Reeds in which spirits paddle
the boats of yesterday and tomorrow.
Yesterday I was a sapling of that ancient sycamore,
with no more leaves than days stretching back behind me.
I did not know history or regret, nor the ages of my life
guided by the sun’s countless risings and settings;
these the courses of nature which remained a mystery
to my untested countenance.

Mother, take me to your holy shore from my boat of offerings;
let me offer what I bring to the sky who bore me,
feeding me her breast from which my names of many ages fell;
let me offer my feet to the earth who carried me,
giving me his roads and his fields of verdant memory;
let me offer my legs to the mountains who stood for me,
enduring my deeds as I traversed my name of history;
let me offer my knees to the trees who bent for me,
showing my body the ladder ascended by spirits;
let me offer my loins to the fields who gave me their seed,
sprouting for me the numberless beginnings of which we are made;
let me offer my manhood to the vault’s unwearying stars,
ascending for me as a map of my becoming in the twilight sky;
let me offer my navel to the sacred river who brought me,
quenching my ignorance with the flood of our ancient memory;
let me offer my breast to the south who nourished me,
bringing me the waters beneath which my memory was renewed;
let me offer my throat to the north who breathed me,
exhaling the divine language through which I live again;
let me offer my mouth to the west who took in my corpse,
weaving for me a pristine form from the net of indestructible stars;
let me offer my eyes to the east who beholds the reborn sun,
seeing my spirit come forth by dawn as a swallow of bright light;
let me offer my nostrils to the wind who brought me forward,
urging my bones to know their own strength against the tide;
let me offer my ears to the swallows who carry the voice of the Gods,
reminding my heart who truly gave its beating and its breath;
let me offer my brow to the peaks which pierce the veil of heaven,
bestowing my two eyes sight of the doors through which spirits fly;
let me offer the vessel of my heart to the Gods who comprise creation,
holding all the worlds in their tongues of sacred memory.

Mother, lead me to the waters of the sky where the stars never rest;
may they receive with their radiant hands my offerings,
my bones and my flesh clad in a pure mantle of light.
See my open palms raised to the starry vault above my brow,
and shine with your voice the knowledge of the open sky where I sail.
For I am your secret son born from the gap in the eastern sky,
and what I know is what throws wide open the doors of the portal of light.
I have seen by the renewed flame of the sun that heron of flashing plume,
whose crest has become my crest on the golden thighs of dawn;
his language is my language which bespeaks the Gods,
numberless as the unceasing stars in the midnight sky.
She is my sky and my Mother,
lifting me up by her flood to the place of my new beginning.

I take my oar in hand to the horizon where spirits rise as herons;
they alight for my outstretched arms on their Mound of our beginning.
Remove the earth from my well-traveled feet and give me my birth,
from this Mound where the flood retreated from the sun;
I come clothed in white to drink the ancient waters.
This is the treading-place of spirits on their celestial wings,
where I too have traveled in a boat sped by the arms of Mother Sky.
She yawned for me with her mouth in the morning,
opening her horizon to send me forth where the sun ascends.
The sun is my companion, like memory, which enters and departs
throughout my ages; but the knowledge he imparts is my eternal becoming,
which governs all my forms the Gods have reared upon their words.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa

The Gods Sail With Me / Where Sky Becomes My Mother

Where Sky Becomes My Mother

I have remembered those waters of my first beginning,
sheltering the banks on either side where I travel;
before my mother, before my father, before my earth and sky,
this deluge from which the holy mound rose on the first day.
Darkness, shade, and the snares of nightfall cannot know me,
nor can my scent reach their ravenous nostrils;
they who know time, flesh, and the bones of living men,
who seek the company of earthbound spirits to bring them down.
But the Gods sail with me when I take to the celestial waterway,
their luminescence reaching out with hallowed arms before me;
no shade can stride farther than their reach of electrum brilliance.

I am in the entourage of that dazzling heron of the first dawn,
whose plumage bespeaks the light rays of the sun,
his bill of pure gold fresh with the perfume of the lotus.
His enchantments sail with me and upon my strong arms;
like those of a god of the First Occasion, whose voice recalls the sacred flood,
my words of power pierce the cloud banks and are heard by all spirits.
Great Heron is my name when I sail the nether waterways,
when my silver-white crest is read from a distance of millions of strides;
and the spirits say of me:

“Behold!  There is one who comes among us with the torch of a god;
his savor is essence of lotus, and his plume is the crest of the sacred heron.
His beaming face is the disk of the Sun-God,
whose electrum mirror knows the uppermost sky.
See how the shades and twilight spirits flee before his feet of sharp malachite,
which have traversed the hallows where Ra the great Ram-Soul is reborn.
Smell his essence of myrrh which goes before him,
predicting his rising from the corpse of the silent earth;
but silence does not become him,
and his tongue rends the sky with divine language.
The Gods sail with him when he takes to the celestial waterway”.

My words are the memory of that First Occasion which came before men,
rippling out across the opaque waters of our beginning.
Having heard the swallows in their primordial sky,
I repeated to my heart what the Sun-God spoke when he first opened his eyes:
I summon the body of the sky from the nether waters;
the sky is my mother who shall give me birth from her body of fine gold.
I summon my light-body from her belly to burn as one of the Imperishable Stars;
she is my mantle, and I am the flame that burns for her by day.
I summon my bones as a ladder reaching up to the arms of my starry mother;
she stretches out her arms of gold for me and takes me to her breast.
I summon my hair of lapis lazuli to glint upon her shoulders by night;
she takes my shining locks to her brow as sovereign of the upper regions.
I summon the silver crescent of twilight to embrace her holy thigh;
my mother of the sky receives her eventide mantle as light of horizons.
I summon the golden net of nightfall in which flicker the souls of stars;
her breasts and thighs glisten in her veil upon which the Gods reign.
I summon my two eyes from the cover of the shady waters;
she hallows my right eye as daylight and my left eye as evening’s guide.
I summon my nostrils as the essence of that first lotus upon the flood;
she takes my breath as her voice by which the repeating dawn is heralded.
I summon my two lips in darkness and open my mouth to the waters;
she opens her dappled thighs and fills the void with her waters of the nether sky.
I summon my two ears by the east and west-facing mountains;
she breaks open her horizons at the thundering voice of my light-body.
I summon the day and the night as the two horizons of my travels;
she swallows me at dusk to give me birth on the first morning of the sky.

These are the enchantments I heard from the swallows
when the first morning clothed the naked sky with his ruddy mantle;
my eyes peering out over the celestial waterway to receive its turquoise glare,
I beheld the mound of the earth ascending from the pristine flood.
Who held back the torrent for my ship to pass when the waters surged?
The Gods sailed with me in their breath of magical power,
coming forth by daylight as the language of the Sun-God’s names;
they hold his forms and his tongues in secret,
known only to the swallows who ascend with his unceasing rays.

Great and elder sun I call out your names
when water travels fast over the banks of my earth,
when come the floods of shadow that rend boats from their moorings.
I have remembered your language from which the Unwearying Stars rose;
their lights are my lights, and their rising is my rising in the florid sky.
O banks of the earth who hold corpses fast in their trappings,
you cannot hold me in your time or your decay,
for the Gods sail with me when I go forth by day into the nether waters;
they take me round the great mooring post in heaven,
where the indestructible stars shine with the fire of my names.

Darkness, shade, and shadows cannot find me where I glimmer,
nor the snares of water catch my lotus essence where it glides.
They who know only shade will never see me as I pass,
for the light I bear turns eyes away that cannot know their beginning.
The Gods sail with me when I take to the celestial waterway,
when these eyes of mine take to the horizons where sky becomes my mother.

All text copyright © 2016 Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa