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Taliessin on Salisbury Plain

18 June 2010

In darkness, Taliessin road in silence to the stones.
In his bones he felt the shivering pulse of this ancient place
Where his ancestors had, long before, offered evil sacrifices
To heathen gods; the roughshod ground leading up to the forlorn,
Ancient space filled him with the dread of unease–
Knowing, as he did, that this place was a city for the dead
Beyond even his own race’s memories. What game was being played
With Taliessin as its pawn, the knight-errant poet
Whose heart divided between the western shores of Llogres
And the imperial joys of the East? Palomides spoke of the Questing Beast,
But Palomides was more than half a heretic still, the waters
Of his baptism not yet dry; and the eye of the enchanter,
The king’s most trusted advisor, could no longer see,
His vision clouded with things that are not, and might yet be–
And the king’s brother, who had nursed on the same milk,
Would not balk at dispossession of a window’s children
If done in the name of good order. Taliessin wondered
What was to become of the Kingdom, the last lonely outpost
Of freedom in the dark-night of the West, where the best
Chance for the preservation of Romanitas remained
(this side of the Rhine, no matter the cause)–
But Camelot had been stained; and now the same madness
Had ensnared the king’s poet, sent here to this unholy place
To redeem the king’s honor. Poet and harper,
Taliessin resolved to do the king’s bidding–one loyal servant
He still had, at the least.

But Taliessin’s heart drifted ever and always back to the East.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 18 June 2010 23:22

    I am caught up in this saga. It needs to be collected in one place (which, translated, means “should be published”).

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