February Song / Homage to T.S. Eliot / In Memoriam Tassie and William Chaltas

03/27/11

February  Song

This song is in me and comes out
like a slow whisper and a solemn prayer.

February is a cruel month
when tender mercies make an end,
when the cold and the darkness crush the frail
and break the strong.
The time when those who seek the sun
and warmth are humbled .

February is the month when the air runs cold,
when it  no longer heals or nourishes
no matter how forced, warmed  or moistened .
It is the month when all artifice fails.

February is the month when life givers die
and when the scent of tender lilies
sweetens the stale air at midnight.

It is the month that the faithful falter
and prayers go unanswered,
except for a blink .
February is the month of mothers
and fathers ,
and of endings,
It is a month of veils and candles,
and overturned clumps of frozen earth ,
when hearts are broken
and made better
by the unbearable burden
of sadness
and its’ heavy weight ;

The month when the lamb,
saved from slaughter,
is escorted into dusk
by the dark knight.

A month of drinking bitter cups
with trembling hands
and numbing cups of myrrh mingled wine ,
those reluctant small and sweet cups
of Greek brandy  .

The month where all the ledgers revert to zero
and the cup is empty,
as the earth shifts by a single breath
and time changes  .

The poet says: “April is the cruelest month,
breeding lilacs out of the dead land,
mixing memory and desire,
stirring dull roots with spring rain.***
April is when the cherished “was” yields
and becomes  the new and unknown future              *** TS Eliot The Wasteland

From “Seeds Of Self Fulfilment Work of Love” by PWChaltas

Poems are written sometimes with a sense of joy, or a sense of amusement ,sometimes starting high up on a given line to take flight , and often times with tears spilling inside or out. “February Song”  is the only poem that I have ever  written where each line dropped out of my heart like a heavy stone, except of course for the stones that were Eliot’s lines. Some days after my mother passed away in February of 2011 Eliot’s “Wasteland” came to mind and specifically those lines incorporated into the poem above . After writing the poem  i visited my mother’s grave one day . I noticed a very small grave plaque next to her’s under a tree , a memorial for A Toronto Star journalist & writer that  quoted Eliot’s verse . (see below ) T.S. Eliot was a great visionary poet that I truly admire. This poem became my memorial , a homage , to him as well as to both of my parents and to a dear cousin who all passed away in February .

T.S. Eliot's verse

T.S. Eliot’s verse

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