Survivors

Survivors

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Devils' Ball


©  2016 Steve King
All rights reserved


I watched as Mephistopheles
paraded through the shadowed room,
new spirits of the damned in tow,
come late from unconfining tombs.

The poor fool Faust regrets his lot,
now drawing sneers from those around.
The gilded idols spring to life,
Old Nick commanding without sound.

So here were all the devils met,
with song and sweet carnality,
all hot desire and cold regret,
hospitable as they might be.

Beelzebub appeared at once,
a leaden chalice held aloft.
He meted out the whithered bread,
intoning softly while they quaffed.

No seraph stands with flaming sword,
but writhing serpents guard the doors.
A well-marked Cain with cocktail tray,
still bows for tips the while he pours.

The Banshee comes, her sphinx at heel.
Dear Salome´ spins without care.
Alas, poor Grendel nurses gin,
the sport of devils everywhere.

Deceivers seek for other jobs,
a snare for all who’d listen in.
The Pharaoh’s daughter brings a taste
of bitter fruits for Solomon.

A weary Charon checks each coat,
While Dante marks the grim charade.
Cerberus sniffs for fallen treats.
Tiresias chants a bitter age.

O Star of Morning, Prince of Night!
Whose hand might stay these votaries?
Which prayer upends such dark delights,
misconsecrated reveries?

But who can tell them anything,
so caught up with their vile joys?
The fates are wagered like small change,
whole destinies are played like toys.

For me?  I’m happy to indulge
my tastes for spirits as I find,
and watch these wretches ply their mirth,
scant threats for Armageddon times.

I bid adieu to these mad things,
but someone stumbles in the hall.
I drop my gaze to grant small grace:
no need to watch poor Adam’s fall.


30 comments:

  1. So well writ! Must be one hell of a place!
    Kind regards
    Anna :o]

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    1. Thanks for stopping by to read, Anna.

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  2. This is pure brilliance, Steve. You've woven so many myths together in a light-hearted party like hell. Damn!

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    1. Thanks for the kind remarks, Victoria!

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  3. This is epic! Thoroughly enjoyed this piece, quite a unique thing to write on, brilliant :) Poppy.

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  4. Epic lines and mind blowing poem.


    Deceivers seek for other jobs,
    a snare for all who’d listen in.
    The Pharaoh’s daughter brings a taste
    of bitter fruits for Solomon.

    uniquely well written poem. And my cup of tea. :)

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  5. I thought the melding of the myths and the biblical undertones were very clever Steve. I specially like the questions you asked in this part:

    O Star of Morning, Prince of Night!
    Whose hand might stay these votaries?
    Which prayer upends such dark delights,
    misconsecrated reveries?

    But who can tell them anything,
    so caught up with their vile joys?
    The fates are wagered like small change,
    whole destinies are played like toys.

    Was Adam saved after all or not?

    Thanks for joining us Steve. As always your poem is well written and flows beautifully when read.

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    1. Thanks, as always, Grace. Sometimes it's fun just to write for...fun! As for Adam, I'm afraid his fall has reverberated through the ages. No help for him.

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  6. Gayle Walters RoseJuly 28, 2016 at 7:09 PM

    Oh my, this is some ball! The guests are all such unique characters and some very strong personalities...I hope they conducted themselves properly and didn't cause a scene. Very entertaining and well written!

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    1. I'm sure they were on their best party manners.

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  7. Great, clever poem. It flowed so effortlessly. I almost felt as though I was at the ball (though I think I'd rather not be there).

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    1. You might have enjoyed it, Arcadia. I've read that Grendel was a fine dancer.

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  8. Clever! Yes, no need to watch Adam's fall when he and his babe started it. Unique subject matter and a most entertaining read.

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    1. Poor Adam. Here, the end was really the beginning. He and his Babe must have parted ways.

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  9. I admire the biblical undertones in this poem. Nicely done :)

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  10. Brilliant.. and all so lyrical and effortless.

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  11. Wow! You crammed a lot of legends into this!

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  12. Marvelous rhythm and structure - plays well with the subject. Truly enjoyed reading this, Steve. Thanks for sharing!

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  13. Hey Steve, the poem has a very current feel and I know many many will find it apt. I am a bit on the other side of the divide, so not sure I can comment with complete indifference! It is very very cleverly done; vivid, visual--all of the references are terrific--I especially like your sneaking in Dante and Tiresias--and great music. Thanks. k.

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    1. Perhaps because I'm in the house of Eve--it's harder for me to see in same way! Ha! k.

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    2. No offense intended and I dearly hope none taken! k.

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    3. All opinions are welcome here.

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  14. I have a sneaky suspicion that I'm fated to attend a few of these balls. Hope there will be bourbon there by then!

    Loved this poem. Well-crafted.

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  15. and so it began with temptation in a garden oasis and the devil came and crashed the party and now we all dance between dark and light.

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  16. This was delightful Steve--you make form look easy!

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  17. What clever play on words. I am in total awe of this piece!

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