Pyramus-Thisbe - a selfless love

Written by: Dr.Ram Mehta

Pyramus was the handsome young man
Thisbe the fair maiden of Babylon.
The houses of their parents did adjoin 
Neighborhood brought the two in relation.
And the acquaintance ripened into love
And the fire within them burnt with bright glow.
Would have married, but their parents forbid
Ardor in hearts of both they couldn’t forbid
They did converse by signs, one can think of
The fire within them burnt like glow covered
But Venus doesn’t always befriend true love.

They found crack in wall that parted the houses
In spared passage for tender messages
Caused by fault in the wall of the mansion
What will not love find for satisfaction!
They passed the tender messages of love
As the night fell they said farewell with awe
Moving backward and forward through the gap
She on her side, he on his, kissed the gap.
One morn the sun put out the stars above
From the watchful eyes, they tried to slip up
But Venus doesn’t always befriend true love.

Then Thisbe stole forth as agreed upon
Unobserved, her head covered with a veil
Out of city’s bounds edifice well known
Waited for Pyramus near a fountain trail.
In the dim light she descried a lioness
Nearing the fountain with blood reeking jaws
With a recent slaughter to slake her thirst.
She fled dropping her veil out of fright.
After quenching thirst turned back for her cove
Renting the veil in bloody mouth on her retreat
But Venus won’t always befriend true love.

Having delayed Pyramus arrived there
Saw footsteps of the lioness in the sand
And found the veil all bloody over there
Crying picked up the rent veil in his hand.
Thought himself to be the cause of her death
Covering the veil with kiss and with tear
And said, come ye lioness tear with your teeth
Let my blood also shall stain your texture.
He plunged sword into his heart with a shove
Blood spurted, tingling the tree with red color
But Venus doesn’t always befriend true love.

Thisbe stepped out not to disappoint him
She noticed the change in the tree’s color
In the agonies of death she saw him.
A shudder ran as ripple in still water.
She saw her veil and his scabbard empty.
He has slain himself for her sake only.
She said, “I could be brave and follow thee
Death alone couldn’t prevent my joining thee
Love and death join us, one tomb be our grove”
She plunged the sword in her breast near the tree
But Venus doesn’t always befriend true love.

Envoi 
Such tale of the self-less love presented
The two bodies in one tomb were buried 
Pyramus-Thisbe tale our hearts do move
Berries serve memorials of their blood
But Venus doesn’t always befriend true love.


                           +++
Dr. Ram Mehta
Second Place win
Contest: Your favourite poem by Giorgio Veneto

**Chant royal [shahn rwa-yal], 
A French verse form normally consisting of five stanzas of eleven 10-syllable lines 
rhyming ababccddede, followed by an envoi (or half-stanza) rhyming ddede. The last 
line of the first stanza is repeated as a refrain at the end of the succeeding stanzas and 
of the envoi. The pattern is similar to that of the ballade, but even more demanding. 88