Sunday, October 25, 2015

Samhain


 GHOSTS

Where do the dead go?
The dead that are not corpses, cosmetically renewed
and boxed, their faces familiar and serene.
Or brought to an essence, pale ashes
in elegant cannisters. 
I ask for the other dead,
those ghosts that wander unshriven among our sleep,
haunting the borderlands of our lives.
The dead dreams,
The failed loves.
The quests, undertaken with full courage
and paid for in blood
that never found a dragon, a Grail, a noble ordeal
and the Hero's sacred journey home.
Instead, the wrong fork was somehow taken, or the road
wandered aimlessly, finally narrowing to a tangled gully
and the Hero was lost, in the gray and prosaic rain,
hungry, weary, to finally stop somewhere, anywhere
glad of bread, a fire, a little companionship.
Where is their graveyard?
Were they mourned?
Did we hold a wake,
bear flowers, eulogize their bright efforts
their brave hopes
and commemorate their loss with honor?
A poem?
An imperishable stone to mark their passing?
Did we give them back to the Earth
to nourish saplings yet to flower,
the unborn ones?
Or were they left to wander
in some unseen Bardo, unreleased, ungrieved.
Did we turn our backs on them unknowing,
their voices calling, whispering impotently
behind us
shadowing our steps?
1997

3 comments:

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Wow. Did you write this, Lauren? It's powerful and beautiful.

Rain-in-the-Face said...

28 years ago (that's a Saturn Return cycle) Joseph Campbell
passed over into the Summerlands on 30th October. I am so
over
the Hero's journey. I'm heading for the land of
One-Eyebrow-Arched Croneland....don't follow me.

I just learned about an Hawaiian deity: Kihawahine. She is
a mo'o and folks are restoring her sacred home on Moku'ula.


lauren raine said...

Well, I guess I'm over the hero's journey as well - your descriptioin of Croneland sounds good to me.