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Feasts of Fire and Air Poetry by Virginia Stewart
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Hymn to the Forgotten Muse
(to my Mother 1920-1990)

Make a solemn toast and drink deep to sorrow
The tide had left for another shore,
And against my will was I cast out on the wave alone.
Yet the storm which sought to drown me
Has only washed my eyes with salt,
and I do give it back again with every tear.

Sister, carve me an oar that is strong enough,
Sew me a sail that can withstand the winds of death.
Build me an oaken ship to bear me back again
to the land and time I do remember in my dreams.
Or if you cannot,
Then let us again drink deep from the bitter cup of loss,
And sing to the forgotten Muse
who woke in silent amazement.
For while She had slept,
The Earth that danced vivid in her eye had passed away,
Leaving only dust where once had stood
Her crystal Temple.

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