“The Courtyard Ghosts” is a poem written about the blessing and tragedy of unmanifested true love.
It is written in four parts, each from a unique perspective. Part One “The Pen” is written from the honest perspective of the pen through which such poetry as this makes its way onto paper.
The Courtyard Ghosts
In ancient town unknown to most,
there stands a memory of two, as ghosts –
Their souls and story unknown,
but some recall the truth that runs
across a courtyard there.
This witless pen can tell no tale beyond what fingers imagine,
so forgive this indulgent trial to tell just what might have happened…
She of distant travels had found a home and love there,
blessed by family, friendship, love, and locks of flowing hair.
Her soul of sun warmed everyone,
regardless of their stage in life,
behind it though she held the secrets
of pain and loss and certain strife.
From courtyard’s bedroom window,
she drew each morning in,
by summer’s sweetest nectar,
or winter’s storm and howling din…
T’was spring amidst the daffodils
and cherry blossom’s blush,
he came on horseback laughing tall,
amidst a wave of friends and thrush.
At courtyard fountain, such horses pause
to drink and force a kind repose,
there allow the man to take it in,
and her, there twixt the shutter throws.
His heart in instant stuttered,
tho’ sun waxed warm upon his face,
the kind wind drew her hair back,
her eyes on his in golden grace…
there time stood still…
“Come on!”, the lads implored him,
“Your wife and home await!”
As quickly as the moment came,
was gone, yet time remained
affixed upon the two there,
and within each heart, their eyes ingrained.
T’was summer ere he came again
to the courtyard fountain to rest his horse,
his motive tho’ was driven
by her haunting memory, of course….
Yet as he turned to parapet’s window,
fear and desire, side by side,
his heart rejoiced in quite nod,
to her at window’s perch, shutters wide.
Again the moment quickly passed,
each flushed in heart’s sweet current,
afraid to say, afraid to reach,
yet lost to moment purest,
so knowing love may never win the moment…
Yet seasons dropped to weeks, then days,
through which he came to pass there by –
each morning, season’s freezing, burning,
one moment each in manifest light,
then simply nod, “goodbye”…
Years flew by as autumn leaves disperse before first winter’s storm –
until the shutters sealed with age, and he alas could ride no more.
Their secret love, unmanifest,
was secret too for those thereby –
the blacksmith and the mason,
respectfully watched each day – to sigh
a sad lament,
when together at dusk their day’s work spent –
found great regret and such remorse,
and sorely cried when life’s long course
drew curtains on this lover’s play…
So by commission of their trust,
they chose “immortal” plans for such –
The mason’s hands were old and strong,
and so with love and stone and song
cast her there, eternal bust,
with wind raised hair and eye of love
to look upon the courtyard square…
The blacksmith stained in sooty mire,
with forearm, bronze and hammer’s fire
placed him on a prideful steed,
to look up toward the parapet
with smiling eye and heartfelt need,
to nod and then ride on…
Forgiveness, please, I beg of thee,
this pen knows not of love or need –
but sees and feels and so in reels
in all this ink romantic…