the gift of dionysus
ecstasy
ariadne at dawn
the fall
dreamless deep
awakening
the gift of dionysus


© 2001 J.L.Stanley

Songs for Dionysus
Ecstasy

Make me dance
shake me from this dream,
awake me to wonder
make me sing.
Sway me to dark forests
make me wild and unknown,
pray me down into earth,
for I am bereft and alone.
I call your name
begging you to rise,
I call your love,
I surge, spin, tumble
into the wave, I surrender
to the wave of life, surrounded,
unbounded, unbroken.
Awake me from this dream,
burn, burn me,
make me real,
burn root and branch -
this is my prayer.
Ten thousand years I sing
give me your face, your breath,
hands, limbs and eyes,
make me a tendril of your fire,
make me ash.

I am Ariadne.      

Ariadne at dawn

she dreams, she dreams,
touching her lover's face
the air is empty, breathless, still
far and faint, a steady slap of oars
he is fleeing, fleeing
into the fog bound sea.
She wakes beneath the cry of gulls
dawn breaks here, shatters here
as she races to the edge of sky
to the end of her desire,
She stands unmoving,
gazing blind into the unforgiving mist
abandoned here,
unbelieving here,
upon the sacred flowers,
flowers of the sea.
The coral and bright anemone
trace grief upon her skin
wounded and lost,
her steps a scarlet trail,
she stands bleeding,
bleeding.

she waits,
she waits.
This hour is her second dawning,
into a different, more desolate dance.

The fall

She is falling through the sky
She has fallen deeply
She has fallen into the underworld

Here is darkness
Here is utter despair

There is no place below here
There is no place deeper
or darker, no stars or moon
to shine a kindly light

No north or south, east or west
No beloved sun or wind

No endless horizon of light
Only her dark, dark silence
Only her human heart,
hidden in this deep place.

In this unfathomable betrayal,
in this destruction of life and soul,
where is meaning?

The dreamless deep

She sleeps in the midnight womb,
in the fallen place.

In her slumber, silence reigns
She is queen of the dark,

She is the breathless deep,
dreamless here.

Dreams are for those
who hope for dawn,

She is dawnless, starless,
She is moonless here.

Ten thousand years pass
and still she sleeps.

Awakening

Beneath the dark,
the pulsing sound
her beating heart,
her shallow breath
echoed in a thin, soft note,
a piper weaves
a song of high meadows
a song of the tenderness of leaves
of life calling, blood flowing,
She feels his gentle hand upon her face
slowly, slowly stroking,
slowly, slowly waking, warming
her ice bound heart.

In the dark, his voice singing
his voice low, so rich
so deep and full, he sings
awake, awake
come with me, he sings
he laughs, he whispers
against her skin, he chants:
I've counted centuries,
I've stopped the sun
And sung down the moon
Against her lips he sighs:
Awake, awake
I am your final dawn
your true dawn.

He sings, Come with me,
he sings, See me,
touch me, be reborn,
reborn into the wild world,
into tangled vines
and deep moss meadows
Drink the hyacinth,
become the fir,
sing the fragrance of lilies
become my lilac grove
My love for you
is a forest in spring
a song of living water
flowing, flowing
across the frozen stone.
This is my gift

the gift of dionysus

Into chaos she was born
and from chaos, dancing, she will rise
Dancing un-forsaken and beloved
Dancing betrothed beneath the moon
Dancing faithful, fearless in his love
For from darkness, he sings her into starlight
from darkness, he weaves her into sky.

© 2001 J.L.Stanley