The World Sits Heavy on My Shoulders

guitar man…play for me
sing my blues away
the world sits heavy on my shoulders
it’s been that sort of day…

I don’t want to burden you
with my troubles
I don’t want share this pain
just sing a song
of days long gone
until I can breathe again…

 Life’s not always gentle
sometimes the nightmare
is staying awake
for when sleep finally
takes a hold of me
my dreams I can create…

… delirium rules the sunlit hours
illusions merge like  a reminiscent mirage
that torments the peripheral of my vision
taunting voices probe my mind
as if it is their mission
to unpick each frayed fibre of sanity
until I question my very heart
… then the convoluted cycle
rewinds back to the start…

guitar man…play for me
sing my blues away
the world sits heavy on my shoulders
it’s been that sort of day…
I don’t want to burden you
it’s just… this madness is insane
the world of humankind has gone a little crazy
and all I feel is fear and pain

If you could just sing a song
of days long gone
until I can breathe again
perhaps for just a little while I won’t feel
caught up in this crazy game …

Sharonlee Goodhand Imageweaver ©

Ádhamh, the Paladin, Tiger-soul, the Elf, and the Watermaid, Líadan

*

A Poetic Fantasy….

A rippled stream through woodlands ran
wending through giant trees and tangled fern
rippled and sang all the way ‘round the foothill, through the woods
and onto to the  calm reflective bay;

Juniper grew beside cherry beside oak beside ancient fig
ferns and mosses in twined disarray  sprung from dappled bank
and half-hidden caves…

And it was there, where lay-lines met and energy sizzled
where rippled stream and foothills met
it was there amid the layers of dappled green
that Tiger-Soul sought the council of Ádhamh, Paladin of the Forestways…

Ádhamh sat in thoughtful repose…
A golden feather held gently between his fingers –
but still he knew Tiger-Soul had entered the glade
and bade the young elf come hither;
“You are troubled, little friend” Ádhamh murmured
“yea that I am”… with this Tiger-soul drew from his pocket
an amethyst crystal of purest beauty and what appeared to be
an ancient artifact in the form of a carved wooden stick
adorned with ancient symbols and etched with endless swirls;”
Tiger-soul’s hands shook… “and I see you have acquired a golden feather”

Ádhamh held the amethyst up to the light…
“Have you ever seen the amethyst
shine so brightly as now?” he muttered, almost as if to himself
“Where did you find it?”

The elf shook his head, cornsilk hair gleaming in stippled sunrays
“Well, I can’t talk Porpoise, but one momentarily lunged upon the shore, depositing it at my feet”
Tiger-soul paused… “a message I should think”

“It would appear so… and the Talking-stick? Where did you find that?”asked Ádhamh.

“The old grey wolf, Múirnín, dumped it at my feet” Tiger-soul said… “take it to Ádhamh he growled
And here I am;
And what of you Ádhamh? Where did the golden feather come from?”

“It was dropped from the sky by a goshawk” Ádhamh responded, his eyes lost
in a far-away gaze.

“This does not bode well for Líadan” the elf shook his head.

“It does not bode well at all … ahh my sweet Líadan, my willow-the-wisp watermaid… my mavourneen” Ádhamh allowed himself a moment of whimsy
before leaping into action…
“The Talking-stick indicates that the Crone of the Sea has acquired a concave mirror
and is using it to imprison Líadan’s spirit… she languishes in perpetual sleep!”

“The amethyst, of course, represents Líadan herself and the golden feather can only have come from one place… the crags above the watery tomb of those lost at sea… for that where the golden eagle nests..
the old Crone must have Líadan in the sea- cave that opens into the bay…”
Ádhamh paced furiously, trampling  Ruby-hued wildflowers and fragrant clovers;
“I’ll not linger a moment longer” he said to Tiger-soul  “Do you travel with me Tiger? Distinguish your path, soul of light, for those who do, balance their plight…
… and forever a hero be”

“I come” was all Tiger-soul said.

*

Paladin & Elf travelled the path of the sun… wading over narrow streamlets
listening, as they walked, to the wise whispers of the trees.

“Have you ever found yourself half way up a tree, enthralled with the tales
etched into the very fibre of the bark?”  Tiger-soul asked.

“Aye” Ádhamh chuckled softly… “many a time.”
My greatest delight is laying on the overhanging oak branch
the one that juts out across the break where stream meets bay…
… for there I  meet my Líadan, tales to share”
“ We will rescue her Ádhamh” the Elf offered quietly.

But Ádhamh’s face was creased with a determined set and he spoke no more.
*

The un-named sea cave was known to all as the home of the old crone… seaweed entwined her hair… waving behind her like slimy eels when she swam;
she was green and mean, wove nightmares from dreams
and conjured up the wicked of might of storms.
But she had a weakness, Ádhamh knew and had not come unprepared;

The Elf could swim better than the Paladin and so it was Tiger-soul who plunged into the cool salty waters of the bay… on a mission to find Octopoda, the Mother of all octopuses in the 11 oceans… and personal friend & guardian of the watermaid Líadan.
Octopoda and Tiger-soul arrived at the mouth of the yawning damp cave
filled as it was, with hollow winds and watery echoes;

Octopoda had turned ashen grey with rage and in each of her tentacles she held loosely woven net bags, filled with the purest amethyst on land and in the sea… amethyst- the old sea crone’s one weakness…

The three rescuers entered the cave with silent stealth… creeping, sliding, slipping
through dank darkness and putrid air… until
until they reached the central cavern, where lounged The old Sea Crone, picking her teeth with
a starfish thorn…

Ádhamh saw Líadan’s prone form crumpled on a mound of seaweed… she did not move, and
to Ádhamh it seemed she did not breath…
Rage and fear and love boiled over inside his soul… only Octopoda managed to foil the Paladin’s  reckless plunge towards his sweet Líadan’s side…

*

Octopoda had rendered herself invisible… amethyst seeming to float and dance in sprays of light…
… and the sea crone who saw only the glimmer of crystal was, soon enchanted, then mesmerized; Octopoda’s tentacles wavered & danced
teasingly close… until the old crone spun with delirious fervor…
…  Ádhamh ran to scoop Líadan up into his embrace- but no!
his movements caught the sea crone’s eye… and she screeched
like all the banshees in the world, shattering the air and piercing everyone’s souls…

All but Octopoda were caught in the sea crone’s trap of noise… and Octopoda hastened her sinuous movements, amethyst tantalizing the crones gaze once more…
Ádhamh threw Líadan over his masculine shoulder, racing the watermaid back across the cavern to the vast opening…
… and Octopoda gave the sea crone her prize… 36 bags of amethyst, piled atop the crone like a burial cairn and her banshee howl ceased;

*

Silence descended upon the cave… filled only with hollow winds and watery echoes;
On the soft warm bank of the bay, Líadan woke to find herself in Ádhamh’s gentle embrace…
… she looked around, seeing Tiger-soul and Octopoda… a hushed calm breathed across the land
as day and twilight mingled;
Shimmer did the trees, she thought… how moonlight becomes them.
*
Image and Poetic Fantasy by SharonleeGoodhand ©26-Jan-15

ÁDHAMH: Irish form of Hebrew Adam, meaning “earth” or “red.”

LÍADAN: Irish Gaelic name derived from the word liath “grey,” hence “grey lady.” In legend, this is the name of a poetess.

MAVOURNEEN: Irish name derived from the phrase mo múirnín, meaning “my honey, my sweet one.”

Ante-Post-Meridiam Twilight

Tumbling untainted joy
skinned knees
and trees
so high I could pretend I didn’t hear mother’s voice-

Tree-climbing is only for boys!
how often she screeched that, I could not count;

Ahh… the purity of those sweet scented days
that wafted by on the scents of childhood-
swamp-water-up-to-my-knees scents
fish-and-chips-wrapped in newspaper scents
pungent with vinegar and tingling saltiness
living in the dreamtime of innocence…

No halting the winds of change though
skinned knees heal and children grow
time ebbs and flows, as season blows into passing season…

Clinging to shreds of childhood dreams
yet eager to venture beyond the grip
of parental embrace, perhaps too soon it was
or mayhap too late, I took the road to independence-

And lost myself
in those early postmeridian days
lost in late nights, catty fights
waking…. where I shouldn’t be waking
taking what I shouldn’t be taking-
– but that was a passing faze, a mere scene embedded
into life’s diorama
– my inner child shook me silly, beat me up, willy-nilly
I didn’t sign on for this!
How wise she was, my inner child;
I think she saved my life.

Trading bar-room- emetic for the sweetness of motherhood
and those healing places where ancient trees grow-
I taught my children how to climb
limb by limb, how recognize the perfect branch
for sitting on
how to share with the breeze their secret soul-song…

… but, and it seems there is always a ‘but’ with me
one that pulls me up as time ebbs and flows
as season blows into passing season
– but…. life presents obstacles of no rhyme and reason
and for a while I lost myself, in soul-consuming sorrow
          only shadows haunted each tomorrow
dreams merely empty reflections of yesterday…

I lived and loved and lost, in the postmeridian of my days
forgot how to smile, while time stood still in silent eyes
I guided children as they grew, but no longer knew
who I was…

Time doesn’t stand still though
does it
and I woke to discover I was aging
an old crone looked at me from the neglected mirror-
– she looked a lot like my mother, in many ways…
… the crone tsk tsk’d shaking her graying head
and then she winked
and whispered… don’t you think
it’s time… time honor your self?

Twilit days flow with twitterlight
  and as I watch grandchildren grow
I grow too, reconnecting with that me
I was long ago.

*
Poetry and Image Sharonlee Goodhand Imageweaver ©