Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Foret Des Dames. Part 5


"I must go," I snapped,

"Aren't you cold in those silly pyjamas?

 

Which way's north?"

 

        "O, come along;

I'll show you."


 

Scrambling up, she grabbed

My hand and pulled me away from the path

And through a rhododendron bush

And so by thicket and scrub till our way

Was flanked by a couple of standing stones

Some eight foot tall.  She stopped as though challenged

And turned to me.

 

     "Well this is it:

This is the end of the Tulgy Wood

Or whatever you call it.  Go into the clearing,

Drink from the pool if you're brave enough

And someone will come for you.  Now I must go;

I've got school in the morning."  She tilted her head.

"You can kiss me goodbye if you like," she said.

 

My heart ached as I watched her flit

From shadow to shadow and out of sight.

 

Once she was gone the ghosts came back:

First it was only the silly voices

Chirruping and tittering,

Then something rattled a holly bush,

Flapped through the rhododendron leaves

And flopped down at my feet like a dog,

Blocking the way.  She raised her face.

Her hair was thick and her bones stuck out.

She rasped, "There's something here you've missed‑

Something you've missed at the heart of the wood‑

A secret something‑ just for you."

I felt my chest constrict with fear

Or longing, thought of Pellinore

And walked at her‑ and so on out

Between the two big stones.

 

        The light

Was grey and lifeless.  Nothing stirred,

Nothing gave voice.

 


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