Harmony by Shane Brant

        Selection of fragments, abandoned, then lost in the halls of an old, Lethean mind

        I. Harmony’s Prologue
                Jesus Thinks Back Wandering the Desert to his First Life

All powerful… all…over…
        all conscious- all conscience…
All… Pitiable ubiquity.
Overbearing meaninglessness. Noise lucked into song.
A rattling being that clanks melodically is all.
Life’s a rain away…
The powerful rain powerless.
The impotent intestines of a storm aggrieved
        by sown totality.
Poem: rainy god conscious rains‎; despises rain,
        despairs the rained-on; that can’t sleep.
Rain, rain, rain. All can be ensconced in a raindrop.
We sit on thrones foundational as sprinkles,
        eminence a splash, our purpose splashed.
Life a puddle near the ocean, never added. Laugh at All.

        II. Harmony Invoked
                Bellici, the Muse of Civil War and Eden, is asked to duet the Melody of Life

Folly! Celebrate! the ancestry of unripe Follies collects
About this newborn. Life’s to be! Bellici, sing and sing, Muse
And matriarch of Mirror’s war! Blood’s songbird tweet!
And seek those private heavens where Nothing once was empire.
Sing, Muse, with that song from which oblivion suspires
Life, and nest about that stitched Existence Calliope has
Around her sister dressed. Folly! Anomaly! That an off note
Begot god and god by Folly chorused Life! But Life must be,
And no mirror will Folly see; that the season’s gone where in night
The flowers spawned, Folly show that in this winter even Eden
Cannot grow. Then to Folly! ‎Though to naught Life may bleed
For Nothing’s needs- despite the deathland, Eden breathes.
Bellici, come- the war’s begun: Guide me through to Life.

        III. Harmony Evicted
                An Intimation of the End of Eden is heard in the head of the singer, sung by
                the Goddess Caprice, evicted by his cohabitants in Eden, sent out to the Deathland.

        I play up on Eden’s bank, back from the river where I’ve sculpt
An artery to out-divulge a moat that fills round a castle, sandy mold,
A mock Parnassus. I hear unfold destructive singing. Chaos breached!
Purpose cold! Flies from Nothing circulate the mountain head as clouding
Pegasi, avowed to bondage Song from Life, bone from sinew disunite.
O wanderer! I hear a music in this world that seems to me sung especially,
So lucid does my name sound in the melody. Words as flowers bloom
About my soul, a mighty tree, as this speechless tone sweeps me to infinity;
On this wind to Nature I’m conscripted a great lot, and to the consequence of Life
Beginning bud I’m hurled.‎ What’s this place of beauty? Eden.
What’s it? A dream with Time breeded.
I? A laugh at dust. Shade.
What’s singing? I sing, Caprice. Open your eyes and the fleshing of this song
                you’ll see: Life.

Air’s itself dissembled!

        I’ve woke to a great loneliness. About this pleasant garden is a darkness
Not yet fell upon the others. Blind souls! Helpless and unmalleable fates!
Or was it dreamed? Did I hear false singing?‎ From where emerged?
The throat of balm or throat of scourge?‎ Life, that Janus face to Folly!
A metastasis in eggs that, those innocents, hatch malfeasance- a mother’s
Bludgeon! Gross and requisite to a Grace (though rued) blooms! Then autumns.
I must to others tell portents; I must with eyes for darkness envision darkness
Tor those whom Night would blind, whom would be, so ripe and unbesotted,
As with this whole garden, by fate, these million blooms, blight.‎ I speak:

‎        This spring of iridescence is doom-kissed; the rivers past
        their ledges bloom, and from effective tomb Beauty’s roots
        are hewn that seem as standing snakes that beg they become
        no prey to food. Eden’s caged- and to the snake the rat is fed;
        yet this world’s frightened and refuses feed:
        so on the serpent the rodent eats.

This prophecy’s unsown. But it wasn’t dreamed!

The multitude’s unmoved:
        O peddler of woe, from this garden sudden go.

        IV. Harmony Wandering
                The singer, walking through the Deathland, sings to himself meditations
                trying to ease his heart from Eden and win a solace in the Deathland.

To the deathland! O if Eden’s set to die, what world follows? What is Eden?
It’s but a word that in my head churns but which hasn’t body, essence,
Merely place by virtue that I dreamt the space inhabited was named it;
But does it matter? So easy was life when nothing was its name-

And so treacherous when Eden! If Die should be its name, then
This wretched dust where I’ve yet taken tender air should be akin.
Death! Is this the percolation of a dream? All that fancy that in the heart
Steeped Imagination and the psychic steamed would bubble in even broken

Instruments- it’s a fool to have heroics in their head that in their heart are baked,
And scream inwardly, to never off their tongue vent the god burning on their mind!
I saw darkness- is god unlit? Not so! Even in this blank garden‎, even if the dark
I saw’s within, and I a cavern unexplored, there’s some latern’d sibyl roaming! O

Infernal valley! I fear for those still gardening who fear the forecasts! Midnight’s
Pitched their souls; they gutless pray an obedient pantheon to keep it so!
Is my hearing sick? Infected? Did true music bless that past habitat superior
To this one freed? Eden’s preserved with their souls’ Prometheus leashed.

Blasted pitch of being that with shackles is that Olympic harmony completed;
Sweetened- I hear the cacophony of Eden. ‎‎
So out! out! into this blacker, sweeter air- Where is held more darkness?
If here’s surpassed that verdured cell in Life, what’s to loath of Night?

Farewell, Light, unhelpful guide! Sun Eden! Let it age and age and age,
And let it banquet on all the simpler lights within that as a light
That’s from the dark is brought to day dies- may all the guests attend
Its glutton manners; beam on Eden, old Hyperion!

He coughs! And he does again! So gigantic shadows pass. A darkness
That’s lit in back, softly black, that looks as music looks behind the eyes-
Darkness grafted holy wings that peaceably with Silence sings.‎ Hyperion,
That aged, pocked candlelight of god, Nothing said, is playing young

And has diffused to multitude. What of Eden?
A breath too near a lantern breathed, to freeze
Confused on its street.‎ ‎
By its wise astronomy be led.

        V. Harmony’s Mountain
                The singer is inspired toward Parnassus where Bellici and the other
                Voices live, and where he hopes Caprice can be spoken to atop.

Parnassus- look! Legend hill that from Eden I spied, whose solitude
I emulated and whose preference for that state I feigned, so desperate,
Even in that footfell’d heaven, was I to gain some other’s speech-‎

        commune to me, transplant thy vision
        that unfatigued surveys without Eden all
        array’d, and bespeak some purpose to this
        desolate oblate wandering this botany of sand.

Surrounded by those bullying angels that enforced in Eden strictures
Of a silent law the currents in this wild swirl the dust as visually
As those sullen guards, but the wind interacts with melody. Within’s an echo
Of the breeze; within’s a harmony of Caprice; her singing’s bred
About my blood that my imaginings of those dark and statutory suns
Espouse visions of a confrontation with irrupting seraphim wrapt in song
And coursing air- fiends! To eject the scaling broods even with a counterforce
Of dreams would irrigate eternity with Fight’s sanguine postlude, sprouting
Nightmares. My blood’s tumult in dissonance! Peace has no pavilion
That’s unrained upon by violence. Life, fathomed so intense that the least
Subtraction from it worsens its circumference, arrests no note in the junta
Hymnals of the stalwart watchers that toward Life’s bulwark I dreamt violence!
Cruelly are egos born from the antitheses from which they wade ever pulled
On and restrained by those umbra forces that never cleft their cords.
So one attends the church of Peace sermon’d at by War. Hence so fluently
Does bland tension Singing from Devotion so perfunctory divorce. Eden’s
Then the deathland. Caprice! Are tyrants in some guise friends?
And as a smaller beast protected by Behemoth blindly crushed
Beneath, is Liberty perforce our friendly end?‎
Freedom’s such a labyrinth that a frenzy waits within.

        Dare the risks. Caprice?
        Every inch unbelly’d in a danger freely entered, even if enticed
        or tempted will grant a finer moment than any one deceived
        that Time’s free by a ruler that toasts Time’s Eucharist, To Be.

        Let Eden then the Deathland be! I’ll uncover those dark genes and spill to Life
Their being that some vaccine may circumscribe the deep, the creeping night,
The death that seemed the bass‎ of immortality in Eden, so Life will sting
The dominance of Death’s theme though Death’s conducting.

        VI. Eve in Harmony
                The singer is wakened from his inner world by a storm of flies
                that are ripped apart by a whirlwind, whose rage accuses him
                of being Adam. At this accusation, his memories of Eden come
                before him and transform into the Memories of all creation.
                The tale of the sisters Caprice and Calliope and their loving antics
                that played shape to Life.

Flies crack this continuum of dreams. A fly, another, another,
And another- a whirlwind’s breached the whirlwind
And congealed to a unity that, to the storm, innards an equal
Fortitude that disbands the wind-atomic titan! Adam! The dust
Re-maelstrom’d screams. I’m not. Though I’m linked eternal
To this feud. Flies pulse the living wind, bloodstream the Matron
Dead, clot, scream; strife incarnates blood and being, and the maggots
Of the vacuum fall from the windy walls that seal the still that I inhabit.

Time, tangled am I in thee! The time prior to my exiling has been forgot.
On the bank I played in Lethe’s mud and now have Memory of all of Life:
The singing, the tapestry, the Song abyss-bloomed, Calliope laughed to Life,
And the playful prick bled god, bled Eden. The Eden that eternal mimicked,
An instant growing as the world so seeded by the melody that danced the deep
Of All into concomitance that the leisure shade where Caprice rests sprung
Unautumnal within our contra-realm, and outward wandered Life
To its rooted reach; and the waters gossamer’d through space the excesses
Of Cali’s Making, substancing the song with lace. O the primal fabric of all
Being let drop unto the lap of a layer done- Life streaming over life, Life
Unknown to life unknown to Life, a flow mysterious, oblivious, the music
Too spontaneous to have plot or Prometheus. Pure whim! I swam in
Life untimed. Being fateless: uncontained; the Abyss’s ocean material’d
And split: the singing ocean accidentally sang to me. All the bells are
Autogenes that ring to those who’ll ring the world in flaming souls
That’ll burn it all to void Elysium. The diadem of sea across the ocean
O the wavelets broad as bells, the crashing rising, the clarion of Will.
Nothing worth its ending has begun. Harmony becomes the knell.
Unmused, we sing our venom to ourselves. Even Eden is de-rilled.

Exemplary empty! The pre-Being tides
Swayed orchestral hypostasis into universe-
Life’s abhorred the elements and flowers descended
From that ocean’s genes that lust for verve
With hebetude that stillness hurts.
Dam the birth preceding Birth!

        VII. Harmony’s End
                The conclusion of an Epic never finished. Lost in the mind of an ancient man.
                All Muses abandon America.

I speak to ghosts at the cap of hell, the soot upon the sole of earth;
From the mountain, peering off, Death must be Narcissus to notice
In the deathland a like mirage to Love. Along the serpent route,
Where Death is flowered, the acoustics of a wayward genesis resound‎.

Hell’s pathology beneath a rusted moon, a rusted aura bleeding,
An exodus of goldenrod, as though within its hands it clasped
Itself as dust and permitted slip all withheld. God prettily decaying.
An exhalation lamenting aged regality that toward eclipse denies
Bereavement and maintains old air upon its lips.

So into the valley of age I bleed. God’s commands to Ares’ conscripts
Contribute to the rushing vein and sport the time I’ve lost as steeds,
To enter deathland as a siege and hack to great oblivion atomic visages of Love-
And Death wearing Revelation at the peak shall be his echo, amorous
Of the noise within the pool he glimpsed himself.

Into the deathland Death dives! A woefulness is wrapt around the genes
Of Being that motivate all life toward lapsarian decree.
The shadows of the world perform a bow unto a master I don’t see.
Strike the bones of Time, Muse, blow through me the concussion of a Prophecy!

Hollow me, so the most marrow’d notes of Time will circulate
The architecture without a wall to die, and the caged peregrinations of Fate
Be free once Destiny’s untuned. Muse!
My voice renews!

S. T. Brant is a teacher from Las Vegas. He has publications or forthcoming in Honest Ulsterman, EcoTheo, Timber, Door is a Jar, Santa Clara Review, Rain Taxi, New South, Green Mountains Review, Another Chicago Magazine, Ekstasis, 8 Poems, and a few others. You can find him on Twitter @terriblebinth or Instagram @shanelemagne.

Image Credit: Calliope, Muse of Epic Poetry by Charles Meynier (1768–1832)