Silent City - Part 1
Ill-fated crowd neath unchained cloud: the Silent City braves
against a sudden sullen flood, unleashing lashing waves
which wash the stony structures clean with radiance that laves.
Deserted streets, once dense retreats, spin yarns of yesterday,
with faded words no longer heard (though having much to say)
since teeming life (abundant, rife) surceased and slipped away.
Within its walls? Whist buildings, tall! Outside the City? Dunes!
They frame a frail forgotten tale, in carved primeval runes,
the symbols strung like halos hung in lifeless, limp festoons.
The City’s blur? A sepulcher for Christians, Muslims, Jews -
Cathedrals, Temples, vacant now, enshrine their residues,
though churches, mosques and synagogues abide without a bruise.
A church’s Gothic ceilings guard the empty pews below
and, windswept blown above the bones, a maiden’s blue jabot.
The Saints, in crypts, though nondescript, grace auras now aglow.
Stilled chapel chimes! Their clapper rope (that tongue-tied confidante)
won’t writhe to ring the carillons (alone, aligned) to haunt;
its flocks of jute, like fallen fruit, adorn the holy font.
Stray footsteps swarm through church no more (apostates that profane) -
their echoes in the nave ring thin, while chalice cups arcane
serve bitter brine as altar wine polluted by the rain.
No face will come with jagged tongue to sing a silent psalm
nor paint pale lips with languid quips to pierce the deathly calm,
nor pray for mercy, grace deferred, nor beg lethean balm.
Continued in Part 2
SURCEASE: to come to an end
LAVE: to bathe
WHIST: hushed, silent, still
RUNES: (mysterious, magical) characters/symbols of ancient alphabets
JUTE: fiber used to make rope
LETHEAN (pronounced “li-THEE-uhn”): inducing forgetfulness, oblivion
Copyright © Terry O'Leary | Year Posted 2012
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