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Transit of the Gods

 Strange that the self’s continuum should outlast 
The Virgin, Aphrodite, and the Mourning Mother, 
All loves and griefs, successive deities 
That hold their kingdom in the human breast.
Abandoned by the gods, woman with an ageing body That half remembers the Annunciation The passion and the travail and the grief That wore the mask of my humanity, I marvel at the soul’s indifference.
For in her theatre the play is done, The tears are shed; the actors, the immortals In their ceaseless manifestation, elsewhere gone, And I who have been Virgin and Aphrodite, The mourning Isis and the queen of corn Wait for the last mummer, dread Persephone To dance my dust at last into the tomb.

by Kathleen Raine
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