Phoenix

by DJ Sprague

Op. 10   Idyls of the Flesh

 From hearsay borrowed, and a few scenes stolen,
from fantasy's flight and memory bright,
these idyls of the flesh, their meaning,
not for the separation of spirit from flesh,
but to their co'mingling,
not from what has been,
but from dreaming what could be


 We should not say anything to each other. Only feel. Be blind, empty our minds, feel the sensations..idyls of the flesh. Giving with careful gestures. Holding for precious moments, postures restraining wanton flesh. The spirit shall commune, and so relishes the closeness and prolongs as far as possible, the sweet sting of Pleasure's subtle turns. It seems that I could take on all the violent throws of a vastly troubled sea, if only we could occasionally commune, and for a brief, sweet passing, place all our stings and pains into each other's care, and after becoming lost in Pleasure's supple folds, all the dullness, and emptiness would surely disappear

 Alienation, at onement, all temporaneous, all forgot..never certain which is dream or sensual, which is of me or not. Naturally disposed so, I am neither'nor until distracted by some conflicting bits of light, or by some sweet vision of Beauty's charm. Distractions by me for me. Sweet visions to deepen my treasures. This pit in me! I have crawled out of it so many times. What hope in purgatory, what ambition in hell!..or wish in heaven keeps me perched uncertain at its rim? Why not just crawl away and be satisfied with what I have gained? But so equally ready to suffer as not, am I..its dark wit, its piercing revelation, its imponderable might extruding the depths of me with the dint of its ever'ready persuasion. So readily would I suffer great doldrums of dullness or brinks of pain or panic, if it teaches when I need to know, what I value..insight, wisdom..its magic. My own limitation…a magician knowing how to disappear, but uncertain how to re'appear. A bit of treasure given to set aside and save for when I do not feel brave, for when all seems wanting or empty

 But how much must I enlarge and translate for myself, such small fragments of what is real? Perhaps when Love seeing me, holds a gaze...brooding darkness, sweet wonder, mixed with portions of apprehension...Love thinks "What a strange creature he is!..possessed by a dream, ruled by melancholy. Aye! I am quite sure, he is quite pure throughout with perfectly resolved values. Clear and multi'faceted. Pure, like fine crystal of a grand glass menagerie. And he probably noticed my incongruity, my inconsistency, my smoke glazed eyes. 'As within, incongruent with what is without' is probably what spread that gentle wonder'mystique over his face. So it seems, seeing me..his radiant innocence, that wonder mystique spread'over, 'as within, as it conveys itself without' has given him, as he must have thought, instant insight into the world within. And perceiving me, has wondered long and perhaps far over this, unsure if he should even be curious about me at all. But no doubt more true!..he really has not gone that far. Maybe he has not gone anywhere in pursuit of my smoke and confusion. More true surely, I was just another exaggerated drollery when I am actually as simple as I am  complex. That indeed, he often wonders if I am lost in the wilderness..if he is not actually cringing in awe at the gaiety of my waist belt, at the surety of my voice, at the purity of the thought and action I strive for, what I value the most, the celebration of life, evermost"

 I heard Love speak. I know, if it goes deep, life will spring fresh out of all and everything. Even when love is lame, it is wise. All that I do, is what I intend, what I want or need, for better or worst. Innocence knows no fear. Fearless, love is pure and clean..and fresh giving, and sweet smiling, and well disposed. In maturity, love has courage and radiates an aura of well being. It is a pulsing pleasing glow, like some natural wanderling having found its perfect place and pace of time. And even if I should feel the pain that loneliness cast, it is but Love's passing shadow or its sweet spirit's sigh, as a larger, greater world draws nigh. Love is both..dependent and separately unique. To love, be both.  Loving without fear is what gives love its color, and warmth, and a flower in winter

 With a deep sigh in these troubled times, I am reconciled...only in a dream can we be. Only in our dream can we be willing..only if I should happen to awake in a dream and find it so, because you are there, would I readily be for you, divisible and indivisible..body and soul, heart and mind

 Barrier reefs we raise, for each too steep. However high or wide, ourselves we cannot keep. No matter how hard we try, and strive to break, no matter how long the sleep, or deep the hope in its wake that the barrier would be gone..before we embrace, hand in hand, warmer and more a'side we stand. Over or under the reef, you or I may go, but not without leaving some of ourselves behind, not before Love softens, each for each..for chance harmony, and companions in'kind

 The night is soft and warm. The natural order of all around, I feel..a thousand movements, a thousand songs moving simply, wholly. Each undaunted, together, randomly blending, and for a pleasant moment, I do not feel me, and belong. Echoes, all pervading, hollowed and faraway..like under the spell of gentle wind chimes, I feel its peace..I feel heavy, pleasant, and distant. The moon is brightly glowing, a kind lantern hung high in the dark firmament for love stricken moods to see in the dimness..through the fog of my sensual darkness, moonglow spreads throughout, pervades within, and amid the disarrayed clutters of opinion and thought, I feel far beyond me. To there I journey, and soon..deep within..a very special place..always open and welcome..my favorite space into which I retreat, far from exhaustions of competing wants and all its heat. Once, directed to me while dwelling there, "Within your day dreaming, you prefer more than me!" That was said by one who could not entrap me within the confines of her day dreaming. Or, "Into your secret self that you refuse to share, you hide." That was uttered by another, whose motives for want of knowing me, I did not trust. But if I should be left unto myself, to be without suffering some over'lording disapproval or cosmic frown, she can be with me in my special place, in my special secret place

 When I am there, I feel that I belong to a much larger world, especially so and especially sweet if there is but one that can be there freely with me. Far from the war of Wills, I see my peace, and needing rest from all, all I need do, is open my windows, look out and upwards, and let a greater universe in! What a pleasant thought I had then, when I realized how private my mind was. Reasoning in that instant, 'if there are those who can hear me, I do not know they can, and feel fine. If there are those controlling what I think and do, it is enough that I do not know they do. A great audience could be surrounding the stage of my mind with its lights and shadows, and upon that stage, strings tied to head, hands, and feet moving me...only so long as I do not see the audience, nor feel the strings pulling, will I be fine, shall I be with private mind and free'

 So it shall be, that I can think and do anything upon my stage! In my mind, total freedom! A sovereign station in any direction..any time. And only believing it so, for anything in it to be. With freedom of Will!...I have freedom of mind, a true freedom I know. All else is governed by laws of passive light. All else is governed by law. And so it seems, higher and older than any hardfast law, beyond many lifetimes of stars is this freedom. 'From high atop a mountain tree, did a drop of rain become free, and after a great and wild flow, flooded the valley far below.' So this freedom seems..something so innocuous, so ponderous, so prodigious

 Instinctively, one can live easily from one craving to another, busying one's self in a void, contemplating the next great sensation, and suspending all other sensations until that void has been filled..at least with some expectation, of some titillating delight, and from delight to delight can life so easily be, interrupted feastings of simple senses. Living from 'want to want' will carnal desire pass into a vanishing horizon. This I have known..and gazing up into the night, a faint blinking and twinkling there makes the night in me even darker. My dim light down under, enpursuent of a dream..yet, in constant motion seeking constant heat, passing around, over, through whatever..seeking to appease some compulsion as though under the spell of some ruling edict, some cosmic law..or unflinching thou'shalt moral..yet, like fresh rain water passing rapidly around, over, swiftly flowing unawares from..to a vast undivided well, would I immerse myself in currents of carnal ecstasies only with her..who dreams as I

 Upon a grey day, long after the leaves have gone, I followed a stream up through the evergreens. The day was very cool and subdued. And all subtle shades of green, yellow, and brown of the grasses, trees, of all the willows and shrubs were made intense by a slight falling mist. The green everywhere, was lush and clean, like the delicate watercress swaying in the gentle waters streaming. Its disquieting stillness..this thick Sunday grey entered and occupied me, causing me to sense with awe, each new sight of natural law, blending and accommodating other laws. Each sight glowing with a sparkling misted light..each, a new mood slightly altering the one before. Passing through this enchanted wood, feeling so much a subject to another, I was suddenly struck again with awe, at so much law, subject to law..so many laws, governed by greater laws

 This enchantment, this heavy grey is what weighed upon me up the path from the stream to my dreaming. This mood possessed me while she was conveying to me all the nuances of her beloved forest and creatures. "Be gentle..very gentle, and they will trust you." That was a good thought! Without trust, one cannot experience love. "Be sensitive to every motion and sound. They will feel you are one of them because that is what they do." That helped, too. She said, "Seize the moment and hold on to it." We stopped in the next clearing to enjoy the natural order of things. We drifted into the evergreen, feeling all, sight and unseen..gentle breeze passing, swaying thoughts of a nearby tree, wandering aimless throughout me...'if there is too much pain and no change, then not to be. If there is too much pain, but change, then to be. If there is more pleasure than pain and no change, then to be. And it is true, there is to'be with no pleasure nor pain, but without feeling..no gain,'  I looked into the bosom of the dark wood, its familiar sight, sound, and fragrance, and knew, it is better to remain with no name

 At night, upon a long country road, we walked and casually talked. I was escorting her home, and we had so far, so far to go it seemed. Like in a dream, the gentle darkness everywhere was pleasant, warm and fair. The sound of our voices were carried away, and forever stored within caverns of moonshade. Even the sound of our gait was taken and hidden..as though all the fields, the trees, the spirits of the valley, the dark firmament above, the rich earth below, were serving to draw away..anything that would distract us from us, from the night embracing us. Like a pleasant dream it seemed. And the moon was especially large and bright. "It will make a good harvest moon." The vast fields of hay to the east of us, had a silvery yellow hue that wavered between light and dark, as the spirits of the valley caused its swells to flow gently under a moonlit night. A brief stillness was upon us, and we were also moved to abstain from motion. We paused quietly against a fence. "Look. Out there! It is like a beautiful warm lake. Do you see it? Want to wade in it with me?"

 She smiled and put her arm through mine. Through the golden field we strolled, listening to the wind'whispers upon its surface. The moon was large and hung low in the darkness..a moody lamp imparting its glow upon the smooth silky features of her face. It entreated me to see as much by darkness as by light. In the darkness, I felt her eyes shine. And under the dark firmament above, I touched the shadows upon her face. I felt her smile, her warm embrace

 Supined, hand'in'hand upon the long fine grass, we stared up at the sky. How so very nice it is to be with her. So possessed, I felt a wondrous sensation. Something alien, but beautiful. Something greater than me, yet personal. Reclined, our bodies lifted slightly off the ground, and with head held high, we let in, all the myriad of ancient lights above. And at that moment, we were all and everything, nowhere and everywhere

 Then suddenly..our star spell was broken. We sat up and heard it again. Another shriek! Louder and closer, we heard it again and again, then silence.  "It came from over there. There! See it! Over there!" The winds were steady, and in its current, a nighthawk, an owl had its wings spread'out far. It was hovering in one spot when the dark mass suddenly dropped to Earth

 "The hunter has found dinner for itself, and perhaps for its family." In the midst of this gentle dream...death, tragedy for one, sustenance for another. "Why so much tragedy and death? ...laws of life." She said, "...but they destroy dreams...cause them to burn like a falling star"

 We stood and looked in the area where life and death had just been. There was nothing to say, certainly nothing up or down about it. I felt she was disquieted. Perhaps it reminded her, how so very much everywhere so far, so close, was so constantly in the struggles of life and death. And we, creatures of Earth, enjoy our pleasures and leisures. Yet, did not the owl remind us not to let our pleasures distract us too much from all? Even we, sovereign Lords of Earth, have but a tenuous hold here

 She was very put off from all this, and fell into a deeper silence. Her within, me outside. And so, as always, it suddenly happens, from apparent nowhere, out of the deep night, some of the living passes into the grey. Forever gone, the finality of it..the young or old, the rich or poor, the bold or meek..the weak or strong, more often leaving only a trace of themselves behind. And I wonder...we, when our eyes forever close, do we divide into separate parts?..and at that moment, the infant part shines through newborn eyes, and the wise part waits for someone on the brink of inspiration somewhere in the universe to shine through reborn eyes. Or does all of who we are? remain whole and continue upon an ever expanding, ever changing path, like the faint crooked path of a deer through the woods

 There is some reality before and after, and I am innately compelled to own every experience, no matter what that experience is. There is obviously not, a divine protectorate ever'poised to intervene every dark fate. Not only not poised, but life is actually equipped to readily take without the slightest bit of compunction, other life for its own carnal needs

 Indeed, by chance fortune, by skill or instinct, by prayer to a supernatural benefactor, or by atonement with all, I may gain more time of life. I may be spared. It is not tragic to pass into the Beyond when one is in old age. That seems natural. It fits into the natural order of things. What may be seem tragic in early life, may perhaps be a great adventure into the grand twilight where even then, a bit of wisdom is gained with the release of spirit's holdfast on flesh and bone

 And by old age, for any tempered by Life's pitch and throws, growing wiser, we are naturally, gradually prepared for what appears to be some inevitable grand transfiguration..or fixation. Living, loving, becoming more and more detached, like from a severed umbilicus, we transform from fetus to newborn, and born a'new, reset upon some new journey. For this end perhaps, all living effort is preparing. Tragedy is but a special view through which we feel special, at the cost of especial smallness. Is this the price?..the risk, we are willing to take

 As the living..are we so, because we are resolved to pay in terms of tragedy, for one feeling or one genuine thought? Tragedy springs from two maelstroms within, each a'trying to make the other's spin, spin their way. And if who we are, is this sucking maelstrom need, then the more occupied with its intent, the smaller we shall be, the more vulnerable we be, and greater, tragedy will be

 And perhaps someone will be strong enough to protect innocence from its blindness until coming of age, but even at the zenith of self'seeing power, will sensitivity to an oversoul spirit be even more greater! How so much, so near! is so completely unconcerned with the pursuits of happiness we hold dear

 She suddenly turned..."I want to leave this place, I want to leave." I agreed..I did, too. We looked at the moon hanging low. How radiant and glowing it was. How brilliant its aura. And the spirits of the valley were moving again. The evergreens, whispering. The brilliant harvest moon, flickering. Her hair aglow with luminescence of moon was aroused. Hand in hand, we walked through the open field upon its silver'yellow'rd swells flowing deep under our feet, and were gone


REV:  Sept 2017

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