Phoenix

by DJ Sprague

Op. 4   Rosebud


 Fastened to the crucifix of her deep, he was also assured by the part of her that was free. Her freedom, inspiring the love that ruled his mind, suspended man..dark woman..they were bound by dark love with roots randomly arrayed, seeking nourishment in the nights of their affections. And they were carried freely, and their love beginning in dark union had cast its spell, when all familiar resolves readied themselves for the consuming fires, when the boundary between them dissolved, and with new boundary raised, and new'found freedom praised, in the night of their solitudes, they see what, and how much was exchanged


1  And the sign read, "Last Exit. Each person is an opening into a universe. Enter here, into the midst of many. But be aware...from such a journey, an eternity may await you. And from eternity, no one returns the same." It was a turn in space, a place of rest, the oldest coffee house on Earth. Thought I better take it before I fly. I have traveled fast and far, and need only a bit of peace for a bit of time, before I return upon a new course, back to my distant star

 At Last Exit cafe, where a table can be rented for the price of a Java cup, it was discussed that the unification of law and love was possible, after which, a ring of gold was fashioned with sterling fish and doves. Three of each meant its power, and the unification of each creates a star. The ring was offered under the light of a full moon from a traveler she never knew, and the traveler shook a spring branch, and rose'colored cherry blossoms filled her chestnut hair, as they rained down upon her un'aware of what they bear, raining down, falling softly down around her, to the ground

2  Neither had we met formally, nor informally. I felt I already knew you. I felt this strongly. Perhaps we are alike in many respects. If this is true, there is always the possibility that you will happen upon me again someday. Maybe next time we will become friends. Perhaps the feeling of familiarity as I had experienced with you, is only a fanciful flight of an imagination ever'poised for motion. The muse setting the imagination in motion, or the imagination magnifying emotion. Which is which? If you are the cause, it would be because of your effortless ability to distract me from myself who perhaps, all the while, is so ever'ready to be distracted. If you are a muse for an imagination always poised for some romancing flight of mind, then our natures may just as likely be un'alike, and unlikely to darkly effect a perfect chance meeting. As you see, I do not know here what is fantasy or real. Nevertheless, I must assume that you are a muse for my romancing mind, and what has been conjured'up there, must eventually be dis'spelled, as I know how. But, it is also pleasant for me to think that perhaps, my assumption is wrong

3  From his place so small to the world at large, he was drawn following the love mirage. While the love mirage performed her dance, he pursued, unaware of her elusive substance, and discovering that she was not really there, he finds himself, the fool. But how does anyone know? Of love, no one is born wise 

4  Her hair, radiant and sensitive, is full and alert and directs the purpose of her autumn spirit. Delicate life. So tenuous its branches, so sensitive its leaves readily falling, so this spirit may prepare for the cold siege relentless dictums make. Her poise is resolved. Her soul, deep..her give and take, great. We meet, and her need reached beyond the faceless disarray of my mind, but I was ready, so readily waiting was I, poised upon the barbs and fires of introspection. So ready was I, to receive the spirit of autumn for the wintering of her mind

5  I cast a spell onto her, and in the same instant, she likewise enchanted me. Together, we were spellbound and felt the magic, and together, we dwelled for each other in forever land

 Spirit man and spirit woman formed. Spirit he for the field..agape, all'giving. Spirit she for the home, eros..she all'receiving, but for man and woman, for true love be, something more in each, each to each must be

 If both were all'giving, each interferes with each in the course of their all'giving love. Love is offered, yet all'giving cannot receive, and with love un'received, love is starved, and the embryo of love aborts, and returns to its star

 If both were all'receiving, there is no love to give. Again, love is starved, and the embryo of love unable to live, aborts from the world, and returns to its star

 Man and woman comes to be through each other, but with the agape river overflowing into eros hinterland, an enduring love will not stand. For with one all'giving, and the other all'receiving, and their union made, they are as one, and one of the same. And being one, there is no need for love between two. The embryo of their love does not abort as before..for it was consumed soon after the two became one..as the two there'after, vied for control of the one

 Without love, spirit man and spirit woman feel incomplete. With love, if the embryo of their love once born, and after taken its first breath, is not nurtured thereafter, spirit man and spirit woman promptly fall ill. Empty hearts drain their eyes, like a child's, depraved of affection. In this way, their love too, rapidly ages, grows old, and dies

 For true love, the man knows, and so does she, for love eternal to be, it must be..as above, so below...as without, so within...each a soul, and for want of each to incarnate..heart and mind, body and soul, each to each, whole and unique, they must each time recover from intimacy

 For true love to be, he casts his spell onto her, she onto him. Each now, man feeling spirit woman's soul, and woman feeling spirit man's compassion, both can give and receive. And if love between two is nurtured daily, the embryo of their love will come to term, and once breathing freely, be born in forever land..if nurtured and tended daily, as two surviving intimacy

6  From some darkened deep did the rains pour. Our images of one another were dripping wet. We cried..we laughed, and were terrified. I, king of fools..you, queen of gestures. And the tears became suspended in air..in their stillness, the light reflected, and we saw. The radiant light penetrated the cold images, and they broke like fine crystal glass. We panick, cutting our feet as we ran. Frantic bleeding hands try to put the pieces together. After so long, suddenly, it seems, we do not know each other. Bewildered and strickened..all this! from simple gestures of intimacy. The pieces are brittle. Cry, and die a little. Laugh, and die a little. I want to live! Let our bodies heal. Let the pieces lay

7  How did I, who always deplored romantic illusion,  became a devoted slave to one? Was I so needy? that a young enchantress need only reflect but a few lines, shade, and color to what I needed in another. And I, so readily willing to fill'in what was not there, even contradicted by her, a'wooing and a'pursuing her to the ends of Earth. Did my need so deep cause my view of depth to become so shallow, that it precluded any ability to see others in their true darkness, lightness, and color? Without reservation or hesitation, I reached for the dream. Inevitably, two experiencing what each had conjured up about the other, and love to that end, shallow or deep, was as inevitable to become so fragile, so vulnerable. And while rejoicing hand in hand, each lays into the other's, the responsibility for the role the other is to play..only to become  angered when a word or judgment did not conclude or surmise appropriately..or critically paused about things that were omitted, or things that happened that should not have happened, or things unsaid that should have been said..and most certainly ignore what did not resemble the portrait at all

  How could I have so fallen? knowing even then, that disillusionment, no matter how horrible, is far better than illusions of love..for I have witnessed the discord..its control dramas vying to possess the one, others have become 

  And so it happened, by apparent happenstance, her path and mine converged. The queen of illusions, queen of queens..and the king of naives, king of kings. And how willing I was to believe!..given already, I, predisposed to romantic psychosis

  We were perfect for each other. She wanted to become absorbed into, respected by, but could not. I could, but would not. We had between us, great dialogues. So great was the force between us, that when we were not cutting great sensations short, we were beating them to death

  Yet, illusion or not..romantic psychotic or not, it matters not whether love sees true or not. It only matters that it happens..that one knows a love greater than one's own earthly self..that one feels the power of a self'transcending force..feeling one's own impending transcension into a greater realm..not post viva, but in viva! A love to cause one's bones to strain, under love constraining

  As we were, by chance occasion on a dark Brahman night, an ominous meeting, more than we knew in a 'last exit' cafe...was it? a last chance that day. A pot of java buys a table, upon which I spread paper aside paper of metaphysical inquiry. And through inquiry, we met in that night..and met more for the same, for many nights thereafter

  Our nights became darker, as we learned what we had in common, was of a supra'conscious nature...things unable to incarnate, and be visible or sensible, here and now. We became darkly tied. I, my illusions defying every unreciprocating experience of her...her, surely, unbelieving my conspicuous lack of demand

  Upon an ark originally given for exodus from our past to a land of make'believe, were we. It was large, made of thick oak beams, but with so many holes in its sides, we were vulnerable  to the moods of the sea. Its draft was the combined space of our dreams

  We were upon an uncharted sea, upon a vessel, such as it was, designed more to carry freight than you and me. Little did I know of its destination or how sea worthy it was. A high tide and an unexpected current had carried us out to an open sea, and neither her nor I, knew where to port, if we knew where any be

  Confined and isolated so, it was a long time before the spell of my illusions of her wore thin and transparent. I think she had hope for me, but not illusions. I hoped my illusions of her would become real, but I managed at least, to not hope against hope

  More adrift than catching the wind, even with sails, if we had them, would have been to no avail. By some singular star must two, together, set a course. It could not be worse..no rudder, no sail, no compass, nor star...only the great distance between us, gave our vessel enough expanse to right itself during stormy seas. Without a star to share, all we could do was ride upon prevailing currents. No vista, no visa...only visceral instinct to guide us

  As uneasy companions upon high seas, we were tethered tandem by some heavenly spun rope. For all we knew, we were well suited for one another..however much our course may become divergent...however much to each other, we were damaging, dysfunctional, or mutually oppressive with mundane detail things..and all the while, with no land in sight

  Our appreciation for being afloat saw us through.  We were set upon a course of fortune and misfortune, which includes the range that luck will take, with what planned fortune must, and with that fortune to become strengthened, we trust

  We stood fast through many storms, and have laid drained and prostrate through doldrum attitudes of sea..even so, I thought surely, our scuttle had some prospects for sail, rudder, and a cabin or two..with no locked doors or shuttered windows that confine. Yet, where could we go within? in the midst of a vast sea under an ancient glittering sky. From storm to storm, doldrum to doldrum, we drifted aimless upon endless seas..and somewhere along the way, we became aware, the great distance between us..though serving, became painfully greater, with awareness of it

  Originally, we had so little in common on earthly ground. We shared some empyreal realm, which was easy enough to do, being fast, as we were, to remain aboard in the midst of a sargasso sea. At first, we lived uneasily..a romantic incubus, a paranoid succubus. We dared to invade each other's dreaming. We were deaf and blind to each other's presence, but it was of mind..willfully deaf, and by our divergence, blind. The precious metals with which I fashioned words, were but airy twists of wind, blowing through the chestnut curls around her head. Drifting upon a sea with its vastness between us, did not diminish the bright ray of light that would sometimes shine through the dull overcast grey, when she played with impressions, or worked to improve the accommodations of our starlit state room. Her relationship with passive objects was within a virtual world of her own, and I, was outside that world because I had no image of myself. We were never in any danger of accumulating too much sentiment. With a rigid code of behavior we had for one another, we succumbed to preoccupation with rules. Dollars were spent to save pennies, and sludge hammers were used to drive five'penny nails. There was no community space separate from private space. We could only be slave or overlord to one another. With regard to both, we were poor performers. Chaos always seemed impending. Chaos...interference patterns from colliding remotely connected ordered systems. We were so remote, that only by instinct, could we remain afloat

  We pressed on, and inevitably, it was our fate to happen upon that fatal current..without a star to guide by, or sail to catch the wind..or rudder, with which to course by design or whim, we found ourselves at the ominous rim, and in a descent into a hellish hole..for this swell of sea, this stream we were in, was coursing into an unseen boxed canyon far below. We both knew..we could see far enough ahead. No means to alter the course, redirect the wind, or dampen the swelling ridge of the waters ahead. Floundering, we were pulled in. Our dilapidated ark began its descent into a great cavernous maelstrom. It must have been sixty fathoms across, and the same to the bottom! The nighted sky was broad, and full of incandescent moon. The winds were confused and chilled, yet sea spray was unusually warm. My horizon suddenly rose to a moon a'glow, which cast its luminescence, revealing swirling debris of all kinds, closeby, and far across the way

  Our thick'beamed ark hesitated not. As soon as it was over the rim, it descended upon the inside spinning mass of sickened sea. I heard a deadening roar, as debris from land and wrecked ships is ground into oblivion upon a jagged sea bed of razor'd coral far below. Our barge broke in two. It was a sham of a ship we knew, and though grateful that it kept us a'float, its destiny was hopeless. Her fingernails dug into its splintering wood..clinching with white knuckles, and with deep salted tears gushing, she was white with terror. Certainly, now, she knows not to cling to something that was barely there even in the beginning..whose prospect to become something more, was caught in this maelstrom, and naught for anything else, except certain oblivion

  If I must go down, it will not be on this pathetic barge! And so, without hesitation, I looked deep into the spinning wall of sea before me, and jumped. No sooner did I enter, did I orient to my left to a glittering nighted sky promising a sunlit day..to my right, a treacherous misty abyss and its deadening faraway roar. The world was turned a'wry. Already, due to its overbearing weight, was my half of the old frame..several fathoms away. She, terrified and weeping with a death grip, cling'd to her piece of the barge. She was seized with horror. She was frozen in terror, still a'clinging to a hopeless pursuit. In her face, I saw a dark and grim withdrawal. She was unable, unwilling to let go. It soon became apparent that the pieces of the broken barge were descending at a greater rate than I. I thought..'at least the wretched wreck will precede me.' She peered steadfast into the the foaming mists below, the rails of her half, she still would not let go. The look upon her face..such despair and anguish. Further and further away she moved, with terror ever deepening the creases of her soul. I shouted to her for her to see me, for her to see how far away she was, from me..for her to see, where she was heading. It was not too late. If she could only hear me..."Give it up. Give it up!"

  I saw the foam brighten and the dark waters take on a deep bluish sheen. Looking up above the slope of the spinning maelstrom, the waters were smooth, which means the wind had died. That always preceded the slowing of the tide..and I knew, there would be time enough for the maelstrom to fill. If only she would look my way, in my direction, beyond me to her beloved starry night, and see her favorite sun, the lesser light in the nighted sky..brilliant and whole. She was dim and grim. In the midst of the maelstrom roar, my cry was drowned. I had to give it one more try..and with all my power, to her I cry..."Jump! Jump, woman...jump!! Look to your left and reach for the sky!"

  I saw her hands become free, and soon, with a leap of faith she plunged, reaching for her moon

8   Matters of the heart sometimes steep themselves in hopeless pursuits of a pristine soul. Reaching out, each gesture of a word meets the mirror held by pale hands reluctant to receive the offerings of life. The heart journeys, and in movement has set itself into vulnerable motion. Aye!..the pain is vacuous and deep, and perceives only itself. Empty space. Feeling only itself, dark heart seeks to be felt. But in reaching for the bliss of the rose, this emptiness having grown warm from the anticipation of beauty's fragrance and pose, bleeds from a prickly stem. This rose is a perfect bud, slightly fragrant, yet unopened. And so, heart in darkness, I feel deep darkness..an acquiescence, a numbing stillness unable to provide the tender warmth of radiant inspiration, nor sufficient waters of affection, nor rich soil of sustenance that a rose bud needs, to open and live its dream. Darkness streams through the heart swiftly, quietly..restlessly passing. And arising, a fine mist surrounds the heart, wherein beauty is shielded, and the grey fogs are overlord to expectant I. Vacant eye, love unrequited? Nay, 'tis only a long valley within which, labors of love darken the shadows of a sleeping weeping willow. Wild unripened rye stands in perfection, in perfect stillness, the distant heart suffers the anticipation of another mirror. Another offering is returned. Not even to the wind are drops of blood given, to heal wounds of isolation. The small stream is beautiful. Clear, effervescent, flowing into pristine pools, but flowing away, flowing up through the dark stillness of a glacial valley, flowing upwards to the sky..here is my hand. It is warm in the coldness, of this space between us. My reach is for you. The sun in me aspires to deepen, so my words may brighten. My substance shall enrichen, my heart remains open, and I will gather water from the stream, flowing into heaven. And I shall ever love, and seek whatever else, that will help cause you to blossom. In the bosom of an unfinished poem, an abandoned emotion lives in stillness and commands the aspiring rose bud. Commanding me, love demands from far beyond me, and I shall acknowledge the wish of the rose and withdraw. In loving, I only wish to endear..but the expectant rose bud will sting any, who ventures too near. To touch, to know..soul co'mingling with soul..loving deep, wide, and far, you are waiting, in silence, for the magic to open you. The magic that will come..when my rapture dies

9  Imagination, insecurity, fear. When woven together, they become strands of a deadly rope that left to itself, kink up into a choking noose around the weaver's neck. And with each bitter gesture of mind, the eyes, the mouth, the body trembling, the noose tightens, and the spirit is squeezed into stillness. Laying spent, freezing indifference makes the body bare itself to its fire of fear. But it too, comes from a deep wintering of mind, and like a faraway desert sea, the fire of fear is but a simple mirage. False flame! Hopeless indifference! It cannot weep. Not even a drop of sea will proceed from my eye. Sleep! To sleep. Sleeping in oblivion, into darkness deep, I plunge

  Under the thundering darkness, the sea fell and surged with heavy spirit. Alone, in the night I chose, I arose high upon my challenge to a dark, robust sea. Rising high within me, I feel the power of the pounding sky. My motion forward had come to a sudden end over violent waters of a darkly thrashing sea. Murky bulbous clouds are, in an instant, enlightened by thundering radiance. The bursting darkness closing in, the heaving waters are drawn skyward, and my bow reaches for the heavy heavens. My vessel is thrown starboard, rising aft, falling port, the blazing light fills me with its sullen vision. And with each thundering report, I felt, under the angry heavens, a great surge rising high above my mast. Over me, a mountain masked in black, broke its pose. The sky fractured by bolting light, revealed a breaking crest lurching for me. But chance favored my sail, and carried me away upon the slopes of a dark mountain submerging

  Suddenly awake, in the pitch of night, I looked out from my bedroom window. The soft tapping rain. The quiet, gentle'touching wind, I felt chaos seeking order. I saw moonglow breaking through the darkness deep, glimmers of love, whispers of wind, gently streaming above

  Dark towers of my city obliterate the sky. They fill my eye, and impose their stillness like some giant prehistoric thought. Heavy concrete of jutting polygons compete for a place very high. But now, through love darkly, I see the dust settle gently, in the grey crags. And humble seeds from the plain, with a drop of rain, maintain their hold, in the quiet dark cold


REV:  Jun 2017

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