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Tony Grist

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Foret Des Dames. Part 7 [Aug. 2nd, 2010|10:13 am]
Tony Grist

"I've had various things

I had to work out."

 

    

  She gave a snort

Which was nearly a laugh.  "You mean those women..."

She raised her eyes to the Eastern sky.

"The sun is rising.  Best get your drink."

 

I gestured helplessly at the pool,

"Perhaps you could tell me...

 

"O that," she said,

"You shouldn't take things like that to heart.

It wasn't the devil you thought it was

But an amiable satyr.  It likes a tune

And the simple life, but the thing it's best at


Is tipping up girls.

 

     "It scared me witless."

 

"So what did you think you were going to see,

Some sort of priest or philosopher king,

Crowned with a wreath of appropriate green stuff?"

 

"Well..."

 

  "Well yes, of course you did."

 

I shrugged and turned my back on her,

Took a deep breath and looked again

And faced myself in the addled mirror.

 

The icy water tasted of stone.

 

"Well, if you'll trust yourself to me,

I'm going to take you down to the city;

They'll give us a proper breakfast there."

 

With a whisk of her skirt she turned away

And it seemed to me I was bound to follow.

 

She led me out of the clearing down

A pathway between conifers

Onto the seaward side of a hill

And into sunlight.  Close at hand

A blackbird called,  then further, deeper,

All through the unenchanted woods,

Others sang back and‑ somewhere distant‑

            A chainsaw coughed and began to worry.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: sovay
2010-08-02 04:24 pm (UTC)
It's an enormous thing. It'll take seven posts.

It's marvelous.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-08-02 05:39 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

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From: ext_127439
2010-08-04 12:00 pm (UTC)
I remember reading this ages ago and really digging it then. I love this style- which I think is called `magic realism`; juxtaposing brusque reality next to fantastical proceedings.

Your Pellinore is great fun. Indeed, I`d like to see more of him and his antics on the hunt.

I wonder, did this poem originate as one of the dream sequence things you did as a witch? I don`t know the proper name, but it`s a kind of mental journey where you greet the gods?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-08-04 04:25 pm (UTC)
Thanks Mike,

Yes, a lot of the poem comes out of "pathworkings" I did as a witch. There's also a certain amount of well-disguised cabalistic symbolism knocking around- in fact the original idea was to go all the way round the "Tree of Life".

Pellinore is ultimately derived from T.H. White's the Sword in the Stone- but I find, re-reading the book, that my version of the character is really rather different.
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