The lion knows he is prey –
There is no escape
From the tempest stirring
Whirlwind from another world.
Once before you saw the nascent storm
You acted midwife to its unexpected end
A stillbirth abrupt and violent
And deceptively unbloody
Suffered in brief travail
On bitter red sands of an arid planet
A world whose legacy you cannot evade
For you have joined your fate to those
Though they lie many light-years distant.
This time the storm must rage on
To its tumultuous conclusion
Alone you must face its savage force
You are the storm’s target
Its destined landfall
You will stand naked in the eye of its
A ferocity that has been known to kill
And though you choose the danger
The lion is afraid.
Already this gathering turbulence
Has carried me far . . .
So far . . .
Away from you . . .
Yet hurtles me back
Into your waiting arms.
Buffeted by the gusting wind
You make no attempt to flee
Or seek sanctuary
Resolute, you wait
For the inchoate cyclone to coalesce.
You will not forsake me
Nor abandon me to death
In the coming convulsion.
The storm falls upon its victim
No refuge now –
Nowhere to hide –
And the storm claims you
As my own.
Notes for Canto I: Sahriv: Vulcan for “storm”
from Germanic words meaning
“like a lion” or “lion brave/hardy” inchoate: rudimentary; not fully formed