Tempest II - Fire


Canto II


by Shoshana








Days on end

     Of desert-forged

          Fever heat                                                                       

               Lightning sharp

                   And thunder hard

                         Raging in the blood.                 


Held in its death grip

     I am a torch set ablaze

          By the curse of pon farr      

Periodic biological imperative of

Rabid reproductive ravening

          Cyclical hormonal upheaval  

          Resulting in obsessive concupiscence

Physiological inevitability of

Recurrent prurient esurience

          Isochronal neurochemical imbalance            

          Culminating in copulatory excess   

Metabolically mandated

Septennial compulsion of rutting

          The secret shame of my race

     The penetralia of my people

The disgraceful musth of Vulcan mating.


When I was a youth

     The fourth cousin of a classmate died suddenly

     Twelve days after her koon-ut-kal-if-fee

It was put forth she perished in an accident

     But it was rumored among my peers

          That she had died seven days earlier

     Beaten to death during first pon farr

          With her bonded mate

Whispers had previously reached my ears

     That pon farr was a fearful thing

     A time of travail for both partners

     And a time of peril for one bonded

          To any male lost in plak tow

Fearing for my mother’s life

     I asked my parents about such dangers

My father answered shortly

     Each bonded pair

     Must find their own way through pon farr

     Some find their way more easily than others

     Some never find their way

     And are lost

And I said

     My father, I do not understand

My mother then said with a gentle smile

     True bondmates need not fear pon farr

But before she could tell me more

Before I could say

     My mother, I do not understand

My father silenced her with a stern look

     Admonishing her

          My wife, each pair must find their own way

          It is forbidden to speak of these things

          The secrets must be learned or not learned in their season

          Say no more to our son

And to me he said

     Ask no more questions of pon farr, my son

     Not of your parents nor of any Vulcan

And so I kept my counsel

     And asked no further questions

     Although of course I wondered

And rumors still occasionally reached my ears

     Disturbing tales of males in agony brutalizing their partners

     Or more rarely whispers of abandoned ecstasy 

          On the part of both partners 

     A possibility only slightly less unseemly and distasteful

The stories of pain and violence

     Appeared to me more credible

     The probability of their truth greater

          Than those of mutual rapture

     Although I did remember my mother’s smile   

          But she of course was human  

And so I grew in years

     And in knowledge of the ways of my people

     And in learning of many kinds

     But I remained ignorant of the truth of pon farr.


Five years I spent on the Enterprise

     Fighting an unexpected love

     I neither understood nor wanted

     Battling you with lively words

     And my own estranged heart in dead silence

The fierce brief flame of my first pon farr came and went

     Extinguished on bitter sands in kal-if-fee

     Your surreptitious aid saving me

          From committing an act far more distressing

          Than an undesired marriage

Rejected by the bride chosen for me

     I took no further mate

And when the mission ended

     I tried to flee my illogical heart

     Retreating to Seleya

     To study kolinahr

In the mountains of Gol

     When my next pon farr came

     I subdued my urges in meditation 

     Under the guidance of the Masters

Two years later I returned to the stars

     When I heard your voice calling across the void

My secret heart recognized your voice

     Although my mind remained closed to love

     Until opened by the encounter with V’ger           

Soon thereafter we mated, married, bonded   

My next pon farr failed to come at the appointed season

For almost ten years we have been bonded

     And the blood fever has not descended upon me until now

You were relieved as was I

I had hoped that we might be spared its pains

     That you would be spared its perils

Only last year foolishly and selfishly

     I jeopardized your life and sanity

          Imposing upon you my katra

          Sentencing you to the precarious trial of al-tor-pan

In those dire moments when the Enterprise was endangered

     I told myself you were the expedient choice

     But in truth I wished to remain with you in death

I do not wish to risk again a love

     Found so late and so lately lost

     And then bought back at such a costly price

But now the season of burning is upon me

     And so in silent fear my lion waits

     To experience the full fury of the storm

But in this moment I harbor no fear for my t’hy’la

     Already the wind has carried me

          Far beyond all such apprehension.


I descend into the high pitch of plak tow

     Implacable purpose

          To take possession of you

               Has taken possession of me

The body’s relentless hunger fulfilled

     With the filling of the other

          Union with you

               Solely and only with you

You who once bore in your body my katra

You who have held in your hands

     My bloodied wounded vitals

You who have long cradled

     Within your heart my steadfast love 

          That love now lost to me in lust.


But flowing yet within your heart

     Is the electric force of love  

          Which sparked between our souls

     Magnetic attraction 

          Which drew us together

And in my deepest, hidden core

     Unseen, unfelt, beyond perception

          The remanence of love endures.   


Upon your inner self and mine

     The ancient bond of a distant world

     Has left different magnetization

The Vulcan mating bond

     Mind melded to mind

     In link as calm and cold

     As deep and primeval 

     As the far reaches of the intergalactic void

A bond which drives body to body           

     Toward union as hot and ephemeral

     As cyclical and explosive

     As the turbulent eruption of stellar flares 

A relationship as intimate

     As the guarded thought left unvoiced    

     And as impersonal

     As a contract negotiated by third parties

Conjugation based on imposed affinity of minds

     And compelled attraction of the body

     With no corner reserved for the heart

          (You and I have built our own room

          As my parents did for themselves)

A bond belonging to arranged pairings in a prideful race

     A people who spurn the hand extended in friendship

     Who contemn the heart’s warm embrace in love                 

     Who disdain the unchoreographed dance of devotion

     Performed by partners walking together in time                

          (In our own unspoken way

          My people do esteem these things

          But by the bond they are not bestowed).


For a long and lonely time

I followed that path  

     Insensible to feeling      

     Indifferent to sentiment

     Unmindful of emotion           

And as for your sake

     I opened my heart to love

So for my sake

     You opened your mind

          To the mating bond

               Which in this harsh hour

Propels us together

                              And apart. 


Though I planted the seed of our bond years ago

     It remains dormant

     A kernel germinated but barely sprouted

It is like a song written for a pair of singers

     Who have only glanced at the score 

     And have not attempted to perform it   

Through the bond I can feel you

     Although not fully

Nor do you try to sense me

     Through our latent mental link

     Although I am aware

     You sometimes do so inadvertently

For love you have become fluent

     In the complex spoken tongue of my people

But never do we speak

     In the unspoken language of the bond

Never do you share your thoughts in silent words

     Or intentionally project to me your feelings  

You know how to do so

     A reluctant student, you learned years ago

     When I taught you how to shield your thoughts from mine

And now you keep your mind shielded

     The barriers raised

     Even when our bodies are joined in love

You jest that you do this to spare me

     The most irritating pricks 

     Of your irrational human emotionality

But I know that your reluctance is rooted in fear

You are afraid of losing yourself

     In telepathic connection with another

Too many times your mind has been pried open

     Too many times your thoughts ransacked

          Your emotions plundered

               Your memories stripped away

Once, even, by one who was myself

     And yet not myself

But it was I and no other

     Who sent you plunging so recently into madness

     By making you vessel for my katra

And so you do not share yourself

     In the way of my people

You have given me your body and your heart

     And that, t’hy’la, has been gift enough.


But in this hour I have no interest in your heart

Unloved now but desired still

Your body is the object of my irresistible intent

     As blind leaves turn without thought towards the sun’s fire 

     Or deaf roots unthinkingly heed gravity’s call    

          So my growing trunk, rising,

          Reaches out, inexorably, towards you –   


Scent of your exotic earthy pheromones 

     The stench of the naked fear you deny even to yourself

     Though I can smell it                                               

Evoke my erotic instincts 


Sight of your body shivering in the chill of nakedness

     Shuddering in the throes of climax

     Or quivering in the anticipation of hurt   

     Your slender bones and sinewy muscles

     All weaker than my own       

     Your dusky red sex like yet unlike mine                          

     Your flesh so easily bruised  

Incite my androphilic urges                     


Taste of your salty tears and sweat and iron-rich blood

     Your serum and semen and saliva

Entice my carnal appetite


Sound of your moans and pants

     Whispers and yelps   

     Whether uttered in pleasure capricious and sporadic

     Or in intermittent pain that soon becomes insistent

Arouse my inhuman sensuality              


Feel of the thick hair of your scalp   

     The rougher hair of your torso and limbs

     The course texture of your beard

     Your human-cool skin, slick and wet

     Your mouth on mine or on my loins

     The tight moist heat of the scabbard

     That sheathes my eager dagger 

These stir my animal passion

They spur my unbridled lust. 


Coupled in mounting excitement

     My lean loins

          And my leonine companion

               Lie sequestered in our lair        

Wrestling in the restless rhythm

     Of the primordial dance

          Set to the pulsating meter

               Of amok time

The beat pounded out

     On the drum of your body      

          As we breathe the feral air                                                     

Of my wanton wilding hour.


     I am transmogrified

Bloodshot with nebulium

     My eyes in their orbits are glowing green coals

     Their cores are bottomless pits of pitch-blackness

Unintelligible are my guttural words                      

     Snarls and gestures and brute force

     Convey to you each peremptory charge      

Blazonry of a fevered physiology

     My phallus flaunts brazen nuptial green           

Distended with a surfeit of seed

     My swollen gonads hang inflamed 

     Aching to be emptied

Unbathed, unshaven, my hair unkempt

     I stink of rank bestial musk.


          I am become hobgoblin           

          Your personal nightmare                                  

Corporeal shadow

Of the one you called beloved

          A libidinous elf

          Who plays lecherous games  

An incubus incarnate

Who haunts your unsleeping nights and days

          An insatiable satyr

          Presiding over a private saturnalia

An undisguised and menacing trick-or-treater

Who demands your personal tricks as my exigent treat

          The only coin you covet in return

          Is my survival.


Object of monomaniacal and brutal desire

          You are

               Punished – 

                    Pounded –                                                                

                         Battered – 

                              Beaten –               

In orgiastic excess of priaptic practice

My jade-flushed phallus remains unjaded

Throughout its grinding labor.


Your private inner flesh submits

      To this violation

Your spirit untamed

     As domesticity is cast aside

     And gentle healing touch abandoned 

Your body itself the lenitive

     Compounded by trituration    

          For which I crave

And must seize by force

          Or die.


I am blinded

     By the incendiary fury of fusion          

          Transmutation fueling starfire

The conflagration forges anew

     The shackles of our mental link

          Impelling coronal mass ejection

               And further elemental union  

Raging need

     Pulses through my veins

          Blazing in the blood

               Drumming in my heart

                    Throbbing in my groin

And in my bowels my bones my brain

     Burning pain ever present smolders   

          Eased only by your touch

               And fully released only in the moment

Of release within your body

     Pulsation exploding to paroxysm

          As my quick and potent sword  

Stabs deep into your gut.  


Your suffering claws at my brain

     Your hurt roars in my mind

Though your pain compounds my own 

     I do not take heed

          For neither of us is mercy found –


As logic is melted

     Into molten passion

Sanity smelted into madness

And on the devil’s anvil

     The Two

          Are melded into





Notes for Canto II:    yon:  Vulcan for “fire; blaze”      esurience:  extreme

gluttony      isochronal:  recurring at equal intervals of time     penetralia: 

the most private or secret parts; recesses      musth (pronounced “must”): 

period of heightened aggressiveness and sexual activity in male elephants,

characterized by violent frenzies       remanence:  magnetization left behind

in a medium after an external magnetic field is removed      contemn:  to be

be contemptuous of      nebulium:  a hypothetical element formerly believed

to cause green lines in the spectra of nebulae     nuptial:  in zoology, referring

to the mating season      unjaded:  not tired; unwearied        lenitive: medicine

or application for easing pain; a palliative     trituration:  the act of grinding,

rubbing,  pulverizing; also, a medication made in this manner     coronal mass

ejection:  massive ejection of plasma and embedded magnetic fields from the

corona of the sun; also, in anatomy, the corona is the  projecting border of the

glans penis      quick:  living; alive  


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