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Poetry Magnum Opus

Ten Winds


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Ten winds the american Indian finished a butterfly dance

and whispered to a horse he had tamed a few days

earlier,"times waters are scattered by the winds daughters

and the red eyes of death are closed by the nithering

warmth of winter's breath"

Rains started spreading to a porch where a pregnant woman

slept with a butterfly resting on her stomach, the

butterfly would not waver against prairie winds and felt

a kick from the child inside.

A few days passed ten winds brothers returned from

battle, red legs the eldest had been killed, "the spirit

of ten legs lays in a cradle" ten winds muttered.
The pregnant woman had since given birth and sang to her

son, "lord guard my child from the cunning of the wild

and the disguises of the damned and the defiled".

At five years old the boy would rock on his wooden horse

and sing in unison with his mother who was in a rocking

chair-"times sands are scattered death's hands are

flattered by ruby rings placed on it's fingers by war

lovers who sing to fattened vultures on the wing". The

child closed his eyes and could see the ghosts of dead

soldiers mistake the sound of wild horses advancing for

the echoes of battle.

Ten winds sat on his horse with his eyes closed and

chanted-"red legs where is heaven?", the ghosts chanted-"

lord protect the living". Ten winds the child and the

ghosts all sang-"mine eyes hath seen the glory of the

coming of the lord he is trampling out the vintage where

the grapes of wrath are stored".

Four years passed death was woken from his bed the risen

moon of red by the scorching blast of rapacious guns

gazing on fallen sons spraying deaths encompassing lens.

On a battlefield a butterfly arrived floating fire on it's wings hovering in front of the drummer boy-"where is heaven?" a one eyed soldier enquired,the boy pointed to the flames and the soldier could see his name through the fire.

A few miles away visions of war rushed through the mind of ten winds, he painted a butterfly on his chest and flames on his back, the spirit of the one eyed soldier passed through him and sang-"Earth with war I'm done fires sustain me as i surrender to heaven's sun, the moon drifts with the night tides dreams lift sleepers as they ride on waves, while my brothers rise from graves ready to govern war ravished slaves woken by death demanding the tides return, sleepers eyes earn his gaze. Ten winds restore rapture to the core of soldiers assassins and executioners. I will leave a lilting paradigm within this song and the boy must drum divining rhythms till he arrives upon silence and the advancing echoes of angelic percussion passing through heaven's sun preparing to stun guns heaving and visions leaving the dead like bullets.The last embers of the fire have blown mourners mark my grave unknown glove the earth as i am torn from it's tapestry.

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An interesting piece. It speaks to me of the ephemeral human journey, the futility of war and the "holy grail" that is peace of mind . Your butterfly also reminds me of that haunting, final philosophical scene in "All Quiet On The Western Front"... oh the fragility of life. Enjoyed the read. B

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guard my child from the cunning of the wild

and the disguises of the damned and the defiled".




the spirit of the one eyed soldier passed through him and sang


Mystical and nice!

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David W. Parsley

Hi Barry,


I don't think I should leave this uncommented, though I am still chewing on it. Was the final stanza intended to be a prose poem paragraph, or is that a trick played by the site editing tool? Fascinating stuff here, featuring the intersection of at least two metanarratives. Not to mention a host of highly original images and turns of phrase.



- Dave

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