She Was My Rich Hilled
She was my rich hilled and side cliffed woman
by Melcrum A.J
whose shapes I knew so well,
like the green waves of home.
We had babes together
tucked into wool-lined cots under a safe hedge,
and solstices smiled on us with breaths of wind
on a still night.
And you stole her
As friends sometimes do.
In another time
I would have split you forehead to pelvis
a final deep swing of family heritage
a bitter two-handed sword
graced by our strong, down-armed rising rage,
teeth clenched, hard staring eyes,
and a wild shout of rock splitting triumph,
after you had slipped that thin sparkling grey knife
between my ribs.
But now I am older looking back,
and its true I had lost her specific person earlier
not realizing, loving her in general
with warm intense and a genuine habit
and not a hint, poor man,
from overwork that this was so.
You gave her something,
a new sense of herself
amongst all the pain and confusion;
and when I was split in half
out flew saw-toothed bats grinning from dark caves
leaving centuries of dust and nose-biting dried droppings,
out crawled giant lizards hinged sideways,
on hind legs at the entrance of my heart
beating their chests in rage;
and slowly, a dragon, old and rheumy,
turning his head from side to side
viewed the strange world of light
with mist creeping upward from a slightly opened mouth.
They flew away, all of them,
after a time of many returns,
and when we cleaned up together
(she had returned)
over several years,
there sat a glowing dark cup of blood-agate
on the quiet ground
in the middle of the cave
with crystal stalactites hanging high above
sparkling in an unseen light.