The Poets

May 03, 2010


click photo to enlarge (incredible detail)


Beneath the skies of goddess Nuit
There lies my passion's sole pursuit ...
It's her- whose flesh is beauty's claim-
A Nubian of Pharaoh's name:

Beauteous Nefertiti- hail ...
Arise, dear love, leave crook and flail,
And let us from this palace flee
So we in silent love can be.

The moon has known our hidden plight,
And we her sacred silver light-
And all in company as one
Our secret keep from Aten's sun.

How joyful though this hidden pledge
That loving wades the water's edge,
That hand in hand reflects the bliss
Of lovers raptured in a kiss.

But now that crimson light and hue
Disperses all our midnight blue,
And soon that sacred god will rise
And cast his cope upon our skies.

So know, before alas we part,
That you, dear queen, are all my heart;
That even now I pine to see
Tomorrow's moon and you with me.


Of the Poem (Parameters and Notes):

Stanza: Quatrain (6 total)
Meter: Tetrameter (i.e. eight syllables per line)
Rhyme Scheme: aabb (per stanza)

Side Notes:

In Egyptian mythology Nuit is the goddess who resides over the evening and the night skies.

Aten, who in Nefertiti's time was worshipped monotheistically, was represented by the sun disc.

A crook and flail were symbols of divine royalty, and the symbolism behind these tools are exceedingly deep and ancient. The digital picture of Nefertiti above has her holding these symbolic items.

And yes, for the record, there's no doubt in my mind that Nefertiti was terribly gorgeous.

Here's a link to a site that did a spectacular digital representation of Nefertiti based on the bust of the queen. Enjoy.


Obiterspeak said...

i so enjoy reading your verses out loud. thank you for sharing them.

clearly you value the lyrical forms but it is not just about being beautiful and musical, is it? when you begin a verse or poem, do you already know what it will say or mean?

Nancy said...

Stunning, John!
I agree - to read aloud is music to the ears.

John W. May said...

Thank you, ladies. Your comments are very nice. It’s exceedingly pleasant to hear from you, Nancy. Hope all is well. Obiterspeak, is it okay that I added your site to my Bogs of Worthy Note list? If not please let me know. Below are answers to the two questions you asked of me:

" ... clearly you value the lyrical forms but it is not just about being beautiful and musical, is it ... "

I enjoy writing poetry, particularly in meter (there's a structure and disciple to it that forces me to contemplate carefully and creatively). Indeed, it isn't just about being beautiful and musical, it's about the privilege of being able to create a work of art by employing whatever necessary poetic devices are available (from hyperbaton to polysyndeton, from diction to rhyme scheme or structure).

" ... when you begin a verse or poem, do you already know what it will say or mean ... "

Every poem I've ever written has molded my original idea into something initially not intended. The second I jot an idea down it takes on a life of its own- sometimes it even leads me, or spawns new ideas. You should check out my post, That Amber Sun- in that post I explain the various stages that that poem went through in order to become what it currently is ... one of my favorite poems.

Nancy said...

Speaking of Nefertiti - whose image looked out at me daily from the face of my favorite watch for many years ...

I was recently gifted a beautiful African angel doll, which was said to represent a servant of Nefertiti upon whom the queen planned to entrust her leadership. Though being part of her court the woman was put to death and entombed along with her. According to legend, the woman then arose as an angel and appeared many times before the Egyptian people. She would not walk, but would float, and so the doll is made without feet.

I have looked and looked but can find nothing about this angel. Have you heard of her? Perhaps my storyteller got some details wrong. Perhaps she is not Egypt but another African culture. Any ideas?

I'll take a photo and send it to you. She is really very stunning herself.

BTW - it is always exceedingly pleasant to hear from you my yoda.

Nancy said...

You are right.... the enlarged photo has incredible detail... the veins in her neck, and I LOVE the freckles. I agree with the artist, in that I feel she is more beautiful with them than would have been without. The rendering is inspired.

sireneatspoetry said...

This is surely a poem that would bring your boons from the Queen herself!

As of April 9th, 2010