The Mythmaker's Tale


U-aka-du-io-a, shu-aka-du-io-e, etc.


Awaken, Father of Flowers, and fill me with ancestral fire.
Sing, Tzhing-zhing, from out the Visionary Pool.
Oh tell me, Muse, the Tale of the Exiled King.

Sing of his homeland in realms of light
Where daffodils clanged like bells.
Tell of his discovering Eve
In shade of Gabriel's wings.

Tell of the lure of an alien world:
His long, Arcturian odyssey,
Spaceman falling through the stars.

And say more, Muse:
Oh speak of his awakening and
Travailing in that distant land,
Oh, through me, sing at last of his escape.
Create in me a palace of remembrance
'cross the stars and years:
Angel appear, astronaut speak,
Skull-father sing from your flowers!



Time before,
Otherless light;
Noontime valley,
Skyfire mountains.

There was a king, of beasts beloved,
A dancing king upon the stones.
He found a dazzling wife with gems for eyes,
And gave to her a sounding shell
To coax her motions round the Garden Tree.

With flowers he encircled her head
As round the Tree she supply spun.
The beasts in turn around her tread,
Themselves encircled by mountain-fire.


Painter, weaver, seeker, changer,
Watchful, royal, fisher, stranger,
(Far back the birdsong travels,
Long-flying bird;
Retrieving time's lost innocence,
Reinventing the world.)



Unicorn appeared a day,
Child of Zulphas, god-white, distant-eyed;
Disappearing, discontented Eve
Who bade the king to dash his oars
And to sail a folded flower-ship.

Came at length  to far Arcturas' shore,
Hoisted sail, espied a castle;
Within  was Circe full of charm,
Without, the bleating cattle.


Long he languished, trapped in Tibil,
Self and home forgetting, lost;
Lost in labyrinthine mansions
Of the Archons in the labyrinth of stars!

Sybil, Tibil, bear-dance, flute-trance,
Lost son, no one, nightmare, dark stair.
(Lost in time, forgotten,
Unseen, unheard;
Empty space of space begotten,
Irretrievable bird.)



In skin of slaughtered cattle slept the sojourner,
The cattle skulls to guard his head.
But soft as dew came Zadkiel
And stirred Penelope's loom,
The sounding conch,
The floating Grail upon the trembling sky.

Then rose the spaceman,
King once more though exiled.
Flinging off the bloody frock,
Cleansing, clear-eyed, saw:

Deception was the world;
His kingdom reigned within  his will alone.
Then 'cross Poseidon's wrathful void came Phanuel, calling:

"Seek and free the unicorn, Tzhing,
Who, captive, pines,
And ride his winged back
To realms of light!"


Fingers moving, angel proving,
Crystal shining, tortoise gliding,
White wing, no thing, airborne, sky torn,
Wrestler, painter, weaver, changer.
(Far back the birdsong travels,
Long flying bird,
Retrieving time's lost innocence,
Reinventing the world.)

with tenor

Suddenly the sun softened:
Peach nectar sky
Delighting the dolphins from insouciance.
I saw the lion asleep with the lamb
Beneath the icecream-colored hills.



Behold the vale of death beyond these doors,
The sham, the masquerade, and choose:
The desert or the glistening Pool,
Self or Dreamself, worldly king or Fool.
Choosing, find again your bride;
Wreathe her hair in daffodils,
Dance with bells that conjure ghostly astronauts.
Over all the world's delusion
Mount your tower, sing into the darkness:
Transform the wasteland with a kiss!


Sopranos and tenor

Death's a dream death's a dream
Of a Tree in a Meadow;
The children who await me there
Are Dancing Ideas.

On the long waters of the
I cannot hold
There is no I;
On the long waters of the
I cannot hold
There is no I.

Mirth, memory's antidote, mirth memory's antidote,
Mirth, memory's antidote, mirth, memory's antidote.