The winds of Sesqua Valley sigh tonight
Among the leaves of cemetery trees,
Whose roots reclaim each wanderer by right
Of that dark heartbeat pulsing like a sea
Beneath the shadow-spell of Selta’s glance,
As trueborn children gather for the dance.
Meanwhile, one exiled spirit lost among
The echoes of a world grown too mundane
To hear beyond itself awaits — in vain —
His summons home. A summoning unsung
By all but dying stars above that tower,
Where Sesqua’s hierophant sequesters power.
The winds of Sesqua Valley cry tonight
From Selta’s summit . . . or some outer place,
Untouched and uncorrupted by the light
Of our raw spark. Swept round by this embrace,
Each dancer’s steps delineate a Sign,
In equal parts infernal & divine.
Against a void grown leprous with the glow
Of mortal lives, an exile lifts his hand
In answer — though the last who understand
Departed from this wasteland long ago,
To dwell instead beneath primeval skies,
Adoring Khroyd’hon with their argent eyes.
The winds of Sesqua Valley die tonight,
Dismissing those who wove their threnody
With foot and flute to speed the failing might
Of all mankind has been, or hopes to be.
Elsewhere, a dreamer exiled from their ways
Takes up his pen of ebony, & plays.
Ann K. Schwader’s most recent collection of dark verse is Twisted in Dream (Hippocampus Press 2011). She is a 2010 Bram Stoker Award Finalist. Her dark SF /cosmic horror tale When the Stars Run Away was recently published in Dark Fusions, edited by Lois H. Gresh (PS Publishing 2013). Ann lives & writes in suburban Colorado. Her website is http://home.earthlink.net/~schwader/
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Poem illustration by Lee Copeland.