Passing the Crisis

She fell asleep to music box rain on the high panes.
His face leaning into hers was grim but nonthreatening.
He wore black, his hair was severe,
but he did not mourn for her. Lightning now,
or rogue currents that shot through veins
in her hands, her brain. The storm
beat hard, she clutched the sheets to her breast.
The gale tried to whip them free, resistant shrouds,
flesh that clung to the body it loved.
In flashes she saw a figure rise
from ebony waves like spilling satin
edged with frayed lace. He stumbled
onto the sand, drowned fisherman
the storm had roused from the depths.
A lighthouse beacon edged him in brilliance,
then swept across the walls of her room
where faces watched, indifferent
or  sullen. They were tired of waiting.
The man with tight hair
returned, he threw back his head
with a wolf’s howl, then swung something
around his head–an instrument, a censer
without smoke. He was blessing her, he was
driving away whatever might harm her.
A light quilt of calm settled over her bed,
and through receding crashes and shrieking,
she heard an insistent pulse that reassured and lulled
as the dark curtains shut tight to block out everything
but the fragrance of lilacs and morning, freshly scrubbed.

Nudge: Pick out a music video you’ve always liked or that has always intrigued you and watch it again, absorbing the imagery without concentrating too much on the song’s lyrics. Write down your impressions, letting your creativity expand how you view and interpret the visual images. (I’ve always been fascinated and a little haunted by the imagery in U2’s “With or Without You.” The above poem is where the exercise led me. What will your video inspire?)

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