The New World Order (Collage) by Steven Hartman
I have come to the place of sands
that stretch the world’s surface:
where mourning winds sweep the bases
of pale trees, and yellow blandness
blazes beneath the sun’s rippling face.
Where I have come from fades
beyond the borders of memory:
my footprints have been swept clean,
as those winds drive like blades
across the skin: where is the sea?
I have come to the temple of Ra:
his Eyes have watched my journey.
There was nothing left for me
before I came, and it’s uncertain how far
I have left to go to reach the unseen.
I come carrying three offerings:
the sigil of a golden sun blazing high,
a triangle of gold set with the Eye,
and two coins, one for each lid:
the journey of those who die
must be paid in full. Osiris waits…
I set the triangle upon the sun,
I lead a lamb into the chamber fumbling
with the coins – dancing with the Fates,
until I draw my knife: ‘Your Will Be Done!’
I cry, as I slash across its throat:
the blood washes over stone and sand,
its gurgled bleats soon shift from sound
to echo, and the walls begin to croak:
the ground shakes, the sigil glows, my hand
reaches out, as the triangle gleams
with golden light, unnaturally beautiful,
expanding suddenly as all other lights dull.
Then I see it, hanging before me like a dream:
a pyramid of light, shimmering, intangible –
its edges like rods of silver, its faces each translucent
gold, and in its centre, throbbing like a heart,
a vision of vast expanses, unlimited and dark,
sprawling through time, now visible in that rent
of reality – the abyss that breeds coagulated stars.
Inside the gulf swelling wide within that light,
I see a thousand citadels and netherworlds:
ghostly ramparts glimmering as worlds
unfold: gilded towers shining like bright
tears, erupting from the radiance of starry furls –
but then all implodes in a swirl of dark-matter,
daylight dies, and shade clouds the lands.
I am left standing alone amidst the strands.
As the temple falls silent, its pillars shattered,
no kingdom lies before me: except the sands.
Joseph Sale © 2014