I. Venus Ascends
As celestial bodies made their cosmic treks
over a wet-grassed field
with Venus ascending in the sky –
I finally penetrated you to the core;
Allowed to glimpse your true being, free of veils.
Allowed into your innermost sanctum,
or so I thought.
But even in this tender frenzy,
even in our discarding of vestal garments,
there was amidst us and betwixt us – a shadow.
Under the jealous eye of Venus we loved.
How demure you were, and how surprised and relieved I was
when I found your arms to be free of scars.
How you would worry, and how I would worry in sympathy,
and the way you would shy away from your mirror image.
I remember also…
How in time, the very traits I loved you for made you ugly to me.
But on that singular night, with the spirits of the grass and the chill air
to our two souls entwined and juxtaposed…
… In an upheaval of old world orders –
A revolution set in motion by trembling hands…
then, you were my perfect first love.
II. Janus Sees the Truth
They were two men, toiling unwillingly,
menaced by the looming prospect of a coming reality.
Long summer nights stretched out
and were lost to their forced labor.
Time flies, and waits for no man.
They were two men, allies, travelling together,
in a world where the vibrant colors had faded slightly,
an older world. They were two men,
slightly older than they had been, themselves.
It was unspoken between them – unspoken like many things –
but true nonetheless, that, given the choice,
they’d have traded away their newfound senses of volatile power
just to experience a younger world.
But time flies, and waits for no man.
After a night of their work, they went to eat.
As they received their food, one of the men, Janus –
filled with thoughts and constant speculation
and thoughts about his thoughts and thoughts again –
and all these thoughts he could never put into words, he sometimes cursed –
this man glimpsed, by chance, his perfect first love.
And he saw her thousand little imperfections.
And in the harsh light of truth he saw the stranger she had become.
And in the harsh light of truth he saw the years that separated them.
He searched his soul and found no regret –
no regret for the termination of their relationship.
But perhaps, regret for the necessity of its end,
and for the relentless passing of time.
Then, he turned his gaze into the future – and saw
(with both anticipation and trepidation)
the prospect of loving again;
perhaps truly, but never with the boundless passion of a first love.
All this remained unspoken to his partner.
III. The True Love
Even today, I still wonder at your beauty.
I still struggle to believe that a creature of perfection such as you
would lower yourself to the level of a being so obviously flawed as I –
in love, no less! –
if only for a month.
I was dispirited, disillusioned and distraught, after a love gone wrong.
And we found each other by chance, before we even knew it was happening.
Under an impermanent, flickering star we loved.
How your smile and face were so perfect
because of their imperfections.
How relieved I was that I didn’t have to worry for you.
I recall our first kiss, and o! how sweet you tasted.
I recall your smell, and o! how many memories it wakes.
I recall the curve of your hips, and o! surely you had been blessed by your maker.
I recall your breast in my palm,
your lips to mine,
and o! surely I had been blessed even more.
Under an impermanent, flickering star we loved,
but while it shone it shone incredibly, incomparably, bright;
me and you, Janus and his Jana.
IV. A Lament on Lost Youth
How dolorous a prospect is the life of a man!
Living eternally convinced that a better existence exists,
and never satisfied with the existing existence.
How disturbing a prospect is the death of a man!
Either filled with unprovable beliefs and unlikely faiths,
or awaiting nothing but nothingness and the embrace of the grave.
How infinitely more saddening, more angering,
more terrifying than these two things
is the loss of youth.
To wither slowly, and – worse yet, o, so much worse – to lose the fire in your breast.
Perhaps loving again, but never with the boundless passion of a perfect first love.
V. The Two Men Travel Homewards
They were two men, travelling home,
in a world where clock had struck midnight,
an aging world. They were two men,
slightly older than they had been, themselves.
And our protagonist, Janus,
looked at his partner beside him,
his childhood friend with a name that meant “nobody”,
and a philosophy concerning the ultimate futility of all endeavors
and the final, inevitable, erasing death of everything.
But two kindred spirits as like in thought and deed never existed.
And one of the men uttered a word of praise
or made an affectionate gesture
or otherwise bared his inner workings.
And the other man muttered a word of thanks
or tried to return the favor
or awkwardly bared his inner workings in return –
Because of their mutual respect;
because two kindred spirits as like in thought and deed never existed.
And our protagonist, Janus, I, the man
who could hardly put his thoughts into words
reflected over the ultimate futility of all endeavors
and the final, inevitable, erasing death of everything;
and the prospect of love, which I sometimes knew to exist
and sometimes was convinced it was nothing more
than reactive chemicals in a biological machine with no higher purpose;
and the terrifying thought of having had my true love and lost it –
and said nothing.
Then, I reflected over the fleeting nature of existence
and the importance, to all people,
of human contact.
I uttered a word of praise to my partner;
he muttered a word of thanks.
Two kindred spirits as like in thought and deed never existed.
There are some good thoughts in this, but as a writer you should know that your audience has a shorter attention span than those of earlier 17th century novelists. As a poem, it read like a sermon.