Somewhere Lions Roam

my response to Rainer Maria Rilke’s Duino Elegies  , below is the fourth of ten poems.


The decree so weak,

the care so false,

that glazed windows battered by sand, clatter and shade….

The dark dancing is set to fool and huddled children shake against peeling skin.

Glitter is medicine sold by winking monkeys.

The silver oil is for dreamers sinking in blossoms, eaten by ants

and bathing in fountains flanked by old wizards.

Just keep spinning and avoid the funeral tune, wedging planks to hold your heavy lids against the fluttering.

We exist here in dirty, self-imposed contradiction

whilst somewhere

over prickling grass

she strides

emboldened feet

absorbing truth


22 thoughts on “Somewhere Lions Roam”

  1. I love yr work/here’s something I read–Rilke on questions & answers
    (from somewhere)

    “Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, some day far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.”


  2. “The dark dancing is set to fool and huddled children shake against peeling skin.”
    Aside from the fact that the above reminds me of playing outside from November to April in my neck of the woods (You should see our cheeks!), it’s just…startling. In wonderful ways.

    I adore this series you are putting together here, oh brilliant one.


    1. well I adore your adoration!. it does sound a bit like chilblains!… I experienced that sort of cold for a little while when we lived in southern tasmania… i remember my toes were sooo cold from the snow and I was so unused to it.
      also in the limestone caves down there… i was a wayward child refused to wear shoes…oh soooo cold. unlike you … heart as warm as toast xxx


  3. Oddly enough, it’s all limestone here, too. One thing I found as a child is that no matter how hot the summer is, it’s alllllways cold in a limestone cave. 😉

    I’d have played with you…shoes or no.


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