(© Irina Jauhiainen)
Sonnet on Death
Demons clutch at your rib cage ladder
Grasping the arteries, choking your veins
your bones are now fragile and ready to shatter
oh dear, you look quite pale
Your bloodless skin is as thin as paper
with cavities where worms slither in
a struggling heart still resisting the Taker
until the last light of your flickering
vision begins its decay to oblivion
succumbing to the pleasure it’s finally giving.
Is it not called reverse necrophilia
if it’s the dead that desire the living?
The underworld pathway is yours to descend
Hail the king who will triumph in the end.
I promise: for as long as gods are kind
once more I shall look at the palest blue
of eyes whose fancy took to morning dew
he wandered far and left this land behind.
There cannot be a place I would not find
while searching for the one he humbly drew;
he told me stories which shall be my clue;
those mountains will be always on my mind…
Their valleys, rivers, where bright sunlight plays
and cloudless skies, oh I can hear their call
to travel there, and thereon spend my days
for as a woman I could not stand tall
(nor say I am a poet, by my ways)
were’t not for love that I would give my all.
Next door the cellist’s dark and mournful notes
vibrate beneath my feet like city crowds
of rainy Paris nights, and she evokes
a gloomy air of low bass notes, out loud;
I close my eyes to hear; how I adore
A thing invades my sight!
Mistaken I think ’twas not there before
but had just never seen it in such light.
Whenever luminous joy comes too near
and makes my melancholy spirit ache
I call to my embrace a man who wears
all black, to lend my eyes a welcome break
so, when daylight keeps me blind and pained
he holds me close, in pleasant, partial shade.
Compose for me a hundred songs of longing
Remind me of the tremors of my youth
Begin with notes that resonate quite long – in
silent resignation they sound forth
Beauty fades with time, we both know that
False assumptions, and truths, crumble down
The moment may never come when you’re at
a brink of revelation; I, in my nightgown
of lilac silk, stand staring out the window
at untrue images of sun and trees
Trapped behind a glass and crescendo
notes as the music you practice
captures a fleeting desire to hold
the world in your hands and watch it unfold.
When I am Dead
When I am dead and my decaying remains
Await for burial, remember this:
I do not wish that thou shalt waste thy pains
On carrying coffins
But shall lay me in ground at break of dawn
In bare ground to lie touching the earth
Beneath rough lawn, outgrown and weatherworn
And plant above my grave a blossomed tree
Whose frail and rosy flowers fall to ground
Leaving no need to bring me blasphemy
Of florists’ bouquets; for all around
This stormy, weed-grown heath
Rages beauty for me to sleep beneath.