Out of the dawn’s shadow
the consciousness that does not think –
opens its heart and soul,
releasing waves of genius over a dry path.An acephalous man attired in blunt armour
presides over these ablutions,
the weight of the gods is his burden –
a divine rod reluctantly wielded.
The fleeting zephyr and restless waters
are reluctant yet nourishing guardians –
bystanders in the rows,
sometimes playing an Herodian part.
Fronds nod attentively to the sound of ritual –
cloud, sky and grass seem to acquiesce;
these sentinels hang like a shroud,
calming the waiting suppliant.
The blade of compassion is whetted
in the innocent’s wonder –
this covenant is an indenture,
an indelible mark, borne of ages.
Mummers sow near an altar
foretelling the harvest nemesis;
from the seeds of this rite
black saplings emerge in the soil.
Ab ovo usque ad mala is Latin, translating ‘from the eggs to the apples’, meaning from the first to last course in an ancient Roman banquet.
Acephalous – Lacking a head.
Herod – A king of Judea from Biblical times.
Mummers – Mediaeval entertainers who performed mystery plays.