Wait for me, Moth

Wait for me, Moth

And why should I tell you the reason
You slipped and fell into the well?
You were sniffing the rim for poison,
You were hunting for heaven in hell.
I look out from the eyes of others
I lie hidden behind their smiles
And I roar in the wind’s wild weathers
Where the glum seas glug up their whales.
I come when you do not call me
At a time of my own choosing
When the fruit hangs ripe on the tree
And the juice from the fruit is oozing.
Wait for me, Moth, oh wait until I come—
And suck you back again into my flame!



Lucy in the sky

Lucy in the Sky

Satan, source of these longings, set me free
From orange sunshine, hell dust, ecstasy.
But no, don’t do that . . . give me more, my friend,
Paradise white and peace at rainbow’s end.

 And let me as I lunch with Aunt Despair,
Have time to blow a stick or cork the air;
And on the razor’s edge, pushed on by pain,
Score with the golden girl or do Elaine.

 O you who mock these words but never knew
Sweet Jesus or the Beast, I envy you—
And if, at wit’s end, you should ask me what
My message is, I’d answer THOU SHALT NOT.

Don’t ask me why I’m laughing sweet and low.
I’m Lucy in the sky with diamonds now.



I take refuge
in the joy of morning
from the night and its sadness:
from the savage
night and its yearning
under moons of madness.

I take refuge
in the peace of morning
from the night and its desires:
from the savage
lust of the burning
flesh and its fires.


Under swooning moons of magic


Leave me, Léthyn, let me go—
Give me wings to fly again!

This is all you need to know:

Passion always ends in pain.

In the golden summer season
When the fruit on every tree

Offered its own secret poison

You, my Léthyn, came to me.

In the Gardens of Delight
Where the pleasure river ran,

There you taught me that the night

Was made for woman and for man.

Under swooning moons of magic,
There you wrapped my raven heart

In your smiles, my dark angelic

Other Self, my counterpart.

There you taught me love must die,
There I learnt the bitter truth

That love was built upon a lie

Of beauty, and the dreams of youth.

One day you’ll bear my ancient burden
And be the broken reed I am,

And I shall sleep in the Always Garden

Like a leaf on the Tree of Time.

The Goat

Dreaming in molten meadows
when the sun honks his horn
and all the flowerwine streams
flash their diamonds and drain

the sunlight, I saw sleeping
between the sun and me
on a hill of hyacinths
a lush, a slim ladyé.

I thought I heard her breathing,
so I crept near to steal
a look at her naked breast
and finely chiseled heel.

And there I found her weeping—
ah yes, I wondered why!—

a brutish goat stood by her
gazing at her glazed eye.

He sidled to her strangely
with a sly gait and slow:
she wept so much she laughed at
herself, for weeping so.

The Waterfall


The Waterfall

No ordinary water
fall was this. In leaping
torrents we were taken
to the world’s end weeping.

Something secret whispered
its warning in your ear:
Don’t fall again
! renounce
falling’s ecstatic pleasure

Falling, falling, falling
like windtossed leaf, like fish
in these wild waters churning
were anybody’s wish!

Abyss of boiling waters,
the bliss of it below,
the gurge, the surge, the urge
the love of all things low!

And here a boat came bobbing,
bobbing the other way—
away from the dark falls
and the dangerous day.

And in the boat sat one
and out he stretched his hand
to you in those wild waters—
an angel from beyond!

Out of the black abyss
of waters lifted he
your body and sick soul
and fetched you to safety

and all the others went
over the roaring falls
leaping in ecstasy
down the watery walls

down to the rocks below
down to the sobbing stones
down to the bloodsplashed spikes
down to the splintered bones.


The Silent Scream


I am sick of love’s cruel desires
the sighs and the tears and the tinglings
and the lust for forbidden fires
in the city of secret longings

I am sick of the drug of sin
the song and the dance and the dream
and the search for paradise in
the city of the silent scream

I am sick of good and evil
and the days and nights of terror
and the hideous face of the devil
looking back at me in my mirror

Saroth the Demon

Saroth  the  Demon

Here’s the nymphomaniac
Saroth the Demon on my back
Riding me with lustcrazed eyes
And crushing anaconda thighs!

And when I tell the bitch to stop
She licks her whip, she flicks her crop
And flogs me freaky until I
Fall at her feral feet and my

Homunculus revives and springs
Up, up again on ragged wings!—
And roars around her until She
Melts in the furnace that is Me.

— Saroth, Saroth, tell me why
We burn in hell,  both you and I.
And Saroth laughs and Saroth says:
Because there
is no other place!

Take this truth and hide it well:
There is no Heaven, only Hell!
Down, down, however low you go—
New hells, new wells, a newer low!


Prajapati’s Teachings (from the Sanskrit)


Prajapati, lord of creation, had three
Different types of devotees: gods, men, demons.

Now the gods approached Prajapati first
For wisdom, saying ‘Sir, give us something
Precious to remember: truth in a word.’
Prajapati offered one syllable.
‘Da!’ he said. ‘Have you understood?’ he said.
‘We have understood,’ they said. ‘You said, Control!
Da for Damyata: Control, rein yourself in!’
‘Good,’ Prajapati said. ‘You have understood.’

The men of the world sought Prajapati next
For wisdom, saying ‘Sir, give us something
Precious to remember: truth in a word.’
Prajapati offered one syllable.
‘Da!’ he said. ‘Have you understood?’ he said.
‘We have understood,’ they said. ‘You said, Give!
‘Da for Datta: Give freely, be generous!’
‘Good,’ Prajapati said. ‘You have understood.’

The demons sought out Prajapati next
For wisdom, saying ‘Sir, give us something
Precious to remember: truth in a word.’
Prajapati offered one syllable.
‘Da!’ he said, ‘Have you understood?’ he said.
‘We have understood,’ they said. ‘You said, Mercy!
Da for Dayadhvam: Have mercy, forgive!’
‘Good,’ Prajapati said. ‘You have understood.’

These words can still be heard when thunder roars:
Da! Da! Da! Damyata! Datta! Dayadhvam!

*            *            *            *            *            *            *

— Translated from the Sanskrit of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad  (c. 1000  BCE)
by Lasha Darkmoon in collaboration with ‘MW’. Published in Acumen Magazine,
May 2008, under the composite pen name ‘Manna Domini’.

Lesbian lovers on a balcony (Verlaine translation)


Lesbian lovers on a balcony… “swooning under a summer evening moon.”

Lesbian Lovers on a balcony

They looked on as the swallows clipped the air:
One pale and raven-tressed, the other blonde.
Light cloudy gowns clung to their bodies fair
And round their slender limbs like serpents wound.

Lovely they were like languid asphodels
Swooning under a summer evening moon,
Savouring such joy as in a sad heart dwells
When lover turns to lover in night gloom.

So pleased to love each other instead of man,
These dreamy girls upon the balcony
Caress each other’s cool and clammy skin.

Behind them in the musky room there stands,
In pride of place, marked out for ecstasy,
The BED . . . the scented bed of sweetest sin!


(Verlaine imitation/translation)





The Green Fields of Longing

In the gardens of paradise 
watered by crystalline
streams, they stroll with
their long-lashed loves
eating the bittersweet
apples of endless desire.

Here they lie listening to music
under the boughs of the
peach trees, the pea-
cock’s tail their fan.
Here where the spiced winds blow
they enjoy the languors of love

in the kissing gardens for ever.
There is food and wine here
too, and there is                                                  
laughter under
the sun, and the sea lies
sleeping, sleeping. What has led them

here, to the green fields of longing
and the bluewater bay?
Prayer and study.
And sacrifice.
And death, a noble death
in battle. Praise them, honour them!

In the pit of vipers

so for deliverance
little from me you cry?
pit sucked you into this
of viper’s slime have i?

about me do you find
what irresistible?
so fascinating why
you think i am me tell!
mine no more a beauty
than a most common is
two i am a penny
but the poor fish i guess
the hook for hungers as
for me do you! you must
replace me something with
that will assuage your lust
god tried you have and found
no comfort in his arms?
failed substitute to find
satanic for my charms?
end dead! ever you tried
spitting in your mirror?
you really can’t can you
sink poor soul much lower?

It’s over now

Go! I set you free!

It’s over now

addiction last day of
let this your lethal be!
it’s over now, in peace
go! i set you free!

the cage from which so long
cooped up i kept you in—
known had you only if
the door was always open!

cage you in this it was
who freely chose to dwell!
sweet my flesh and young
drug you made your hell!

chain i am your and you
clutches are in my helpless!
nothing but my mercy
save you can and kindness?

see, sharp the hook i slip
from torn your mouth! no more
pain! quick, away fish swim
again i catch you before!


The bad dream passes


The loves that lead to nothing,
The shattered dreams, the tears!—
Old age, sickness, dying,
The terror of the years!—

Among the kindest mercies
To ease the sick heart’s sore,
Is this: the bad dream passes,
The nightmare is no more.