Like Orpheus I tread the underworld
To regain my love I lost. Who suddenly
From me bereft, I seek again to hold.
I plead with Charon, fain to cross the Styx
That fearsome stream afeared by gods and men
And making payment gain the farther shore.
‘Gainst Cerebus, I learnt fair Psyche’s guile
And cast him honey-cakes to still his tongue
And sate his gnawing belly for the nonce.

Entering Pluto’s dull and dreary halls
Ignoring all the suppliant shades who stretch
Imploring hands and arms to gain my help –
Who cannot help them truly – walking by
I seek Elysian fields where I find
My love is sweetly walking round the bowers
Her snow-white arms busy with floral wreaths
Her eyes meet mine: she stops, her open mouth
Soon receives mine with kisses. Unto me
She clings and reunited now we be.

Who is my love? Prudence? Charity?
Wisdom? Spirit? Love? Intelligence?
Perhaps all these – and mayhap something else
Divinely provident by God alone.

2009-08-06 Orpheus-scaled


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