Thursday, 17 February 2011

Woman In White

Over the hill when the full moon is high
Sadness shimmers in the haze.
'Don't go there,' they say, 'while the dark owls fly'
'No not there' - in the distance they gaze.

Their eyes seem so weary, lacking lustre or shine
As they turn their heads back to the ground
Shuffling along with no sense of time
No smile of  joy, no laughter, no sound

Winter darkness veils the old houses
As candle shadows leap in the street,
Such silence only the unknown arouses
In the village, echoes waiting to greet
Morning's blue skies and cool breeze relief.
'She'll come again.' they say. 'But why?' they ask
'Why are we haunted?' 'Why so much grief?'
Questions perhaps to be answered at dusk.

Later in half-light strange, neither today nor tonight
When moon shadows send lambs running scared
Desperate sorrow arose neath the stars' light 
Few looked up, just the few who dared.

The shape of a woman appeared in the wood,
Walking silently yet demanding attention.
'I have come to you, as you all knew I would.'
Crystal voice spoke to aged apprehension. 

People knelt and bowed their heads to the earth.
'Look up!' she looked, 'You're old but alive,
'Not to linger for death did your mothers give birth. 
'I beg you, for love and laughter to strive.' 

'But why send us fear for thirty long years?'
Wondering voice cried out from the crowd,
'To our hearts so much fear, and so many tears?'
A question everyone echoed aloud.

'Aged are your voices, as the songs here once sung
'Like the last drop of snow in spring you remain
'And hide from the sun - you dare not be young -
You let sadness return once again.'

'I am that sadness, and the memories you know
'That'll stay until time will allow 
'You to forgive the girl who died long ago
'I've a right, I believe, to know how.'

3 March 1972  

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