Friday, June 5, 2009

Poetry Friday -- Marriage 2: The Homely War

Marriage 2: The Homely War

Come, I besiege you, let us lay each other waste,
contrive to breach one another's defenses,
engage in combat earnestly till death draws us apart.
Not, my proud beauty, for god or country,
nor for honor do I brave the clash of arms
to call for your surrender: for private glory only,
mirrored in your eyes like smoke and flame.
But sweet it is, and fitting, I should die at your gates,
gnarled and gray and garrulous from waiting.
I will never retreat, I promise you,
the years will not attrite my faith.

Come, less us have a battle, you and I,
while scavenger birds wheel in the sky.
Let us step to the music of their ragged cries
till we are stretched bloody side by side
and must be dragged away to mend and meet again.
I see you full of years, old buzzard,
gaunt and tough, tattooed with scars I gave you,
married to the sword and well prepared to die by it.

Come, let us do away with one another,
unhurriedly, for we have world enough and time.
I am a crafty man, milord,
you won't grow tired of my tricks.
You'll see how I insinuate myself into the cracks in your mortar,
how I entwine your turrets like ivy.
My spies are cunning, they'll whisper me everything,
your shoddiest secrets shall be as my own.
Lay on then merrily, do your stuff,
and damnd be him who first cries, Hold, enough.

18 March 1978
29 March 1978