Monday, December 31, 2007

Landscapes in Anxiety

The following series continues the building of portraits of the four sages who enter/realize Pardaes. At the same time I am drawing spiritual/existential maps of Messianic Time and the paths/gateways to approach it. The trek takes its toll on the four sages (and their author). Each of them stumble, and we see them now, faent, falling, failing.

I originally pictured 5 landscapes, one for each of the sages, and the fifth perhaps sung by a chorus of Jerusalemite women. One might imagine the chanting of Aicha (Lamentations) in the background, or perhaps Eleni Karaindrou’s brilliant score for Trojan Women. The five poems are:

Ben Azziy:        Exhaustion
Avvuya:          Twisted Sinews
Ben Zoma:       Broken Sapphire
Akiva:             Night
chorus:           Rain

I have sketched out the first 3. As always, it’s impossible to tell if there’s any value in this work, still so raw. Yet to do on the next overlay: sharpen the rhythms and enrich the slant rhyme.

Lanskaeps (Landeskaeps?) in Aengziyettee
Wind karvd roks, slate an shale,
Glassee an blak in a steddy raen.
Ben Azziy huddelz in the last shaedz a kuller
Eroden in kanyenz at the far endz a dusk.

Huddelz in shivverz az thot goez granee,
Abzorbd in shaddoez az the lite groez dim.
Leevz baerlee ster in a faent wind.
It kut intu hiz skin, isee sharp.
Slo and langward. He push aggenst a dark.

This pardaes raen and pardaes wind
Iz rush thru the kanyenz.
It karv a klef between Addom and Seel.
No plase for a root tu kleeng,
And evree breth a battel a will.

Twisten Sinnewz
Avvuya waeks befor the don.
Swimmenz in dreem fragz ov saelen ships,
Or emtee howzez, abbanden an dekay.
He heer leevz ster in a chill wind,
The fraegrenz iz gardeenya, faent in the aer.

Like mooring roeps strechen in ebben tide,
Straenz, a kreeken. Like a waggen
Overlaed with rubbel an brik,
Its bordz sag an axxelz skweeken...

So Avvuya liez in bed,
Hiz stummak overtite an notten.
A faent nawzhya stifelz appattite;
A faesless dred pressez down aggenst hiz chest.

Dutee kallz. He sit. He stand.
Iz ungst remaenz unnaddresst.

Broken Saffiyer
“The kortyardz ov the Hevvenlee Tempel
Ar a pave ov solled saffiyer.
And I am klime tu hiyer korts...”
     Immajjen Ben Zoma.

Rubbel now, az if erthkwake heevz
Until iz Messeyannek Pallas iz kollaps.
Like a mudbrik hows.
Like so much terrakkotta.

Beneeth iz soelz, shivverz ov the saffiyer tielz.
Wuz that Hevven? A lenz intu Seel
Refraks a ten dimmenshen skaep:
     Saelen ships an howzez in dekay;
     Pardaes raenz, blowen chill an faent.

Wuns iz miend kaskaden kristel praer;
Now twisten iz tung tu kerstellen vers.
A Divvine shelter, Divvine sheeld
Serrownd him no mor.
Voisez kry owt, “raze him, raze him!”
Thay kast Ben Zoma owt a grase,
An like Miltenz injerd aenjel,
He tummellen hedlong
Thru the flintee slivverren iz faeth.

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