I once almost wed an invisible lad.
My mother and father were sure I was mad.
He gave me a lily, translucent and white
And he said, "I am here, only out of your sight."
We went strolling along in the bright boardwalk sun
He gave me a bear he'd invisibly won.
Oh, the hours I spent, as our courtship progressed
With my Mother and Dad and our "is-he-there?" guest.
And slowly (but quickly) with needle-sharp joy
I realized I loved the invisible boy.
So one night, I feigned a farewell at the door
And crept to my room to be with him some more.
And I didn't cry out, but I kissed him instead
When I felt the invisible boy in my bed.
And he kissed me right back, put my hands to his form
Unseen, but so beautifully, wonderfully warm.
But then-- such an awful confession to make!
It was then that I made my most mournful mistake.
As we lay there entwined in our twilight embrace,
I said, "Darling, I wish that could see your face."
Though I meant no offence and had no ill-intent,
The most meaningful meanings are often not meant.
He silently rose from my arms, and I then
Never saw my invisible lover again.
Long years I have spent, crossing all the world's span
But how does one find an invisible man?
So if you should meet, in your paths wide and free
A man you can sense and can touch, but can't see--
Perhaps contemptlating the heavens above him--
Would you, oh, would you please tell him... I love him?
Questions left in cooling sand
Are swept away each morning,
Answered by the sea.
Once upon a land called Umbra
There grew a shadow-tree
Casting cool and friendly darkness
For all the Shadow-folk to see.
It grew from earth as black as ink
With bark of silver-gray
Its dusky leaves sang in the breeze
That whispered by all day.
The Longrays and the Midlights both
Took rest within the shade,
And even subtle Noondays
From its boughs were not forbade.
But came the half-expected day,
When harmony was halted
A lowly Gloam, of name unknown,
Observed the tree and exhalted:
"Oh, what a lovely glade this is!"
He cried with sudden cheer,
"I'll gather all my Gloam-y friends,
And build a tree-house here!"
So off he went to fetch his friends,
His error unsuspected; for
His betters sat beneath the tree
In darkness undetected.
The Noonday, lowest of the bunch
Spoke first, to prove his worth
"We simply can't have Gloamings here!
This tree is our turf!"
The Midlight, next in Shadow-Caste
Agreed, with wrinkled nose.
She said, "The Nubby-Noon is right,
Longray, what do you propose?"
The Longray, slim and graceful,
Did not answer for a while,
And when he spoke, his eyes were cold
Above a midnight smile.
"I've often found that Gloamings
Who require our instruction,
Reform the best when we suggest
That faithful cure: destruction."
And just as planned, the Gloam returned
To show his friends their tree,
The Gloamings felt their gloom depart--
A wonder, all agreed.
But when the little Shadows walked
Beneath the shading limbs
They found only aristocrats
All velvet-dark and grim.
"Welcome, weaklings," said the tallest one,
A Longray, it was clear
"We're glad to see you safely, but
You must be gone from here."
"You see," piped up a Noonday
"There are others in these lands
Who've vowed to spare this lovely tree
From any Gloaming's hands."
The Midlight said, "It's best for all.
You'll see some other day.
But now we really must insist,
You Gloamings go away."
And all the little Shadows
Drooped their heads and turned to go,
Except our little nameless friend,
Who turned storm-gray and shouted, "NO!"
"This tree belongs to everyone!"
Cried our Gloam-y friend, aghast;
"You can't just send us all away
Because of how we're cast!"
The Midlight looked bewildered
And the Noonday seemed to sway
But the Longray shook his head and said,
"Then we'll do this the hard way."
He tore down from the dusky leaves
A limb of darkest dark
And through the leafy whispers
Our Gloaming saw a spark.
As the sparking grew into a flame,
The Shadows shrank in fright
But the Longray swung his brand too high--
And the shadow-tree caught alight.
The Gloamings cried in shock and fright
But now they were included
In fear's unfriendly, fickle shade
With those whom they had feuded.
For now the Shadows high and low
All melted in the flame
The wild light was blind to caste
And made them all the same.
Today there is no shadow-tree
To keep away or share
Its dusky leaves have gone to dust
Its bark is black and bare.
No Shadows fall beneath its limbs
Or on its barren ground
The only witness is the wind
Whispering without a sound.
Perhaps one day, another Gloam
On whim of wish and word
Will pass by chance and see the truth
Of rumors she has heard.
For in this land called Umbra,
There may soon be changes churning
Born on wind that whips the shadow-shrubs
And the light, sharp scent of burning.
You cannot domesticate sentences.
Believe me, I gave it a shot.
They're adorable when they're just fragments,
But complete, they're emphatically not.
They'll leave subjects all over your carpet
And consume every object in sight
There'll be predicates on every inch of your couch
And believe me, the bastards can bite.
Your walls will be splattered with commas
The stains are as stubborn as ink
The overused colons, I'm sure you can guess--
Your houseguests will flee from the stink.
So take my advice, gentle reader
Take to heart every word that I've said
Save your money, your wits and your friendships
And just get a goldfish instead.
Two days, three sequences, ten sticky fingers and many, many jellybeans later... I can sleep! :-)
PS: If anyone feels like adding a little music to this, I would be muchly overjoyed!