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Writings and Witterings


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Haunting

A gothic tale from ‘The Alchemy of 42’

A Transylvanian melody chimes through the night.
The air is still and warm, there is no trace of light.
He haunts the forest glades and the castle where she lies,
she strains to hear his footsteps, her hopes can’t be disguised,
she knows he’s coming for her, yet no fear shows in her eyes.

She wants to keep this castle, comprehends he can’t resist,
knew it from All Hallows’ when he stole a hard-pressed kiss,
knew it by her father’s pale and trembling lips,
knew it from her mother’s stark forbidding hiss.

She enjoys his sense of style, his dark and brooding brow,
his high and sculpted cheekbones, his skin white-cold, ice-sallow;
in his cape of burnished black, he is the maniac
the villagers with their garlic fear and dread.
She smiles at the thought of the crosses they have wrought
to stop him ascending to her bed.

She discerns her soul will wince when she hears the chimes, since,
when discord climbs the stairs, he’ll try to claim her for his own.
The scent of juniper, aromatic, spiced, sincere,
is the harbinger she’s counted on; dreamt about for years.

A rap upon her door, her pulse races, her mind roars,
she plans to keep this castle and will do evermore.
He leans in close towards her, his cape as soft as zephyrs,
it sweeps her pure white nightgown as he slowly travels down;
his breath, a mist of insight, strokes her furrowed frown.
His teeth glint in the moonlight, from her, he’ll get no swift flight,
she arches, plunges in the knife…

He’ll not take the castle from her, not deny her of her home,
but of one thing she is certain, it won’t be far he’ll roam.
The haunting now commences and continues till the dawn,
she licks her lips: a killing, and legends to be spawned.

Shared with dVerse Poets (2015)

The Alchemy of 42, Black Pear Press (2020)


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Entanglement

This is the one song that everyone
would like to learn: the song 
that is irresistible’.
Margaret Attwood (1998) 

Threads of melodies tack through sultry air,
weave over waves, surge past the shore,
travel to a boat and see the split shot sinkers
he presses onto lines to give them weight.

His head tilts like a vertical bobbin,
shuttles back and forth to pick up the thread,
wonders where the sound originates,
ponders—perhaps it’s only in his head.

The sound’s in the shape of his lover
the woman he dreams of through the day
and then he sees his line is entangled,
he won’t make it back to her early this way.

He picks at the line and starts to unravel
yet siren threads drift closer, he hears
them become the soft tone
of his love’s sweet blandishments,

‘Promise you’ll be early
tonight, my dear?’
He shakes his head, the song enthralls.
Home calls, his wish: to kiss her soon.

Growing Places (Black Pear Press, 2021)

At a week-long workshop during lockdown, the theme was the sea. At that time, I was reading poetry by Margaret Attwood and enjoyed her ‘Siren Song’, I love Greek myths and am fascinated by fishermen – I remember as a child seeing one who was repairing nets on the harbour – such a solitary life, it seems to me. I acknowledge Margaret Attwood and quote the first stanza of ‘Siren Song’ in ‘Entanglement’.


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Lion’s Gate

Point your heart at Sirius,
a flower opens up,
star-group Sirius,
bright in the night skies
light in your eyes.

Essence of joy
tunes to an out-of-time state,
energy, rhythms of guitars,
the stars, auras of significance,
the Dog Star barks.

Point your heart at Sirius
brightest star in the night
lightest touch to your eye.
Dog days of sultry summer,
heavy and hot, hot, sultry, heavy, hot.

Thunderstorms bring fever,
blight the bark of trees,
parch us to our knees.
Drowse through summer
languid with heat,
scorched or sparkling.

Point your heart at Sirius,
Osiris[1],
God of life and more
Sirius[2] is yours.

Polly Stretton © 2020

The Lion’s Gate—the annual period of the heliacal rise of Sirius, brightest star in our sky and a great ‘Spiritual Sun’ of our Sun—is at its peak on the 8th day of the 8th month of the solar year. The first day of Sirius’s annual reappearance over the horizon at dawn, July 26th, was taken as the beginning point of the Ancient Egyptian calendar cycle, and was also the first day of the Mayan lunar calendar each year, in an intuitive unison of solar and lunar energetic patterns. The energy of the double infinity of the 8+8 within the circle of Creation is expressed in sacred geometry as the Rose Cross or Tetracross.

[1] Egyptian god of fertility, agriculture, the afterlife and the underworld, the dead, resurrection, life, and vegetation
[2] In ancient Egypt, the name Sirius signified its nature as scorching or sparkling. The star was associated with the Egyptian gods Osiris, Sopdet and other gods. Ancient Egyptians noted that Sirius rose just before the sun each year immediately prior to the annual flooding of the Nile River.