Saturday, February 18, 2006

Walk with an archetype

The fabric of her dress is
web-thin
torn, greasy
with age.
Her tangled hair
streaked white.
We are walking by the ocean
and I am mostly
listening.
The air smells wrong
she says. A statement
nothing more.
I don’t reply.
She soothes herself
stroking the serpent
resting around her neck,
whispers,
Good girl, good girl.
The serpent
opens sleepy eyes,
readjusts its’ curl.
A plastic bottle
bobs on the water.
She sees it
with tidal wave eyes.
They called me a demon.
Water sighs in and out
on the shore.
Her owl follows
at a distance
hooting messages.
Her glance captures the landscape.
They think they are gods,
she says, scooping sand
and letting it run
through her fingers.
Her nails are bitten to the quick.
They cut down the tree.
They made women into
walking sticks and
drove me away.
She picks up a pebble
and kisses it tenderly,
sends it skimming and bouncing
across the waves.
But, (she raises one arm high
and smiles at me
as the waves begin
to surge)
I didn’t go.

8 comments:

Musawwir said...

Oh, that is wonderful, it made me laugh at the end. Thanks

LJ said...

Thanks for reading, Musawwir. I think she'd be pleased to know you laughed.

Koru's Daughter said...

I am so grateful that you didn't go.

Mary said...

Wow. Yes. I am going to bookmark this particular post for future reference. What an inspiration - I love the way you make her so, well, normal, in one sense, yet so very powerful, mystical and extraordinary too.

And I have just finished reading your July archives. Words fail. I have great admiration for what you have written there and for what you did.

LJ said...

Thank you, Mary. Underworld archetypes and myths - and the story of Lilith - have a strong resonance for me. A book that impacted greatly was "When God was a Woman," and there is mention of text recently discovered about someone who could have been the real Lility. I'm also learning about the significance of Lilith in astrology - and right now, no coincidence, Dark Moon Lilith is conjunct my 12th house Mars. So that poem came out easily and the walk was very vivid in my mind. I was also thinking of the last stanza of a fantastic performance piece on Lilith done by astrologer, Kelley Hunter which you can find here: http://www.mountainastrologer.com/lilithmono.html

As to July. I think you're the first person who waded in there and actually read it. Thanks so much for your comments.

Mary said...

lj: thanks so much for this information, I have located and will read the Kelley Hunter piece ... I have heard of Lilith in astrology of course but not done much reading about her. This has provided an incentive.

And having just checked the ephemeris, my natal DML is 4 degrees Aries (7th house), which is where the transiting North Node is currently situated ..... No coincidence I should find your blog and this poem perhaps?

Coming from the 12th house of the unconscious and the collective as it does, and combined with the fire of Mars, no wonder the imagery of this poem is so powerful ...

LJ said...

I'd say it wasn't coincidence. Nice to be able to talk a little shop, too!

Teri said...

So beautiful and evocative. Reading this and looking at Baby Tessa, with miniature feet and mouth dappled with bananas and oatmeal, I am present to the many forms and faces of Her.