Monday, April 26, 2010

After Midnight

Sometime just after midnight
Jack awoke, feeling very hungry.

As he listened to the darkness,
Jack heard music—
A harp playing softly.

The music was as
Sweet as honey,
As dark as molasses,
As mysterious as
The darkest night.

How could that be?
Wondered Jack,
But without his Considering Cap
He really could not imagine.

So quietly he got up
As his mother snored softly
And slipped to the kitchen window
To see what was the matter.

And what should Jack see
Outside the window
But a giant plant
Rising toward the sky
As thick as a tree
But its top leading
All the way beyond the clouds.

What had come to pass?

Jack slipped out the door,
Found his Considering Cap
Out in the garden
At the base of the giant plant,
And put it on.

Jack scratched his Considering Cap,
Considering what had happened.

Why had there grown such a wondrous plant?
Could it be,
Jack considered,
That the magic bean
Had sprouted?

Perhaps so, Jack considered.
Perhaps that was precisely
What had happened.

And where might the beanstalk lead?

Above the clouds,
No doubt about that.
And there had to be a top.

This Jack decided
As he scratched his
Considering Cap.

Then Jack considered a bit more
And decided to find the top.

The Harp Says Itself

Chthonic the music,
Creating out

Of the depth of itself.

As are we all.

A Dark Climb Up

And so as his mother slept
Jack filled a gourd with water,
And, despite being very,
Very hungry, Jack grabbed
Hold of the beanstalk.

And he climbed,
And climbed;
And climbed some more.

Then he had a bit of water
And climbed some more.

And he climbed,
And climbed;
And climbed some more.

And all the while
The little cottage got smaller,
And the clouds loomed larger,
And the stars twinkled
And twinkled,
And the dark faded
Until a faint light
Filled the east.

And then. . .
And then. . .
Jack touched the cloud!

It was gray,
And wet,
And Jack climbed some more.
And then it was foggy,
And Jack climbed some more.

And he climbed;
And climbed;
And climbed some more;
And then. . .

And then. . .
Out the sun broke
Into a clear,
Beautiful morning.

And all the earth. . .
But wait!
This was the top of a cloud!
All around
Stretched out
Wispy white—
A world of white cotton
Rather than grass.

And there, far off,
Stood a castle,
A big, shimmering
Castle with towers
And a big wooden door.

Oh! Considered Jack.
If only I could go there!
But did he dare
Let the cloud hold him up?

Jack scratched
His Considering Cap
And considered.

If a cloud could
Hold up such a castle,
Mightn’t it hold him as well?

Jack took a deep breath
And stretched his foot,
And there—the cloud
Felt solid, like a rock!

So Jack gave a whoop
And jumped onto the cloud.

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