The Four Faced Wind

Poetry by Valeria Castellanos



Spring Cleaning

The spiders have spent the last season,
Building castles between the leaves of the lilies.
The last of the winter leaves have turned into fantastic mobiles,
Toys for the breezes, woven from abandoned webs.
The porch is covered in pollen and dust.
The blackbirds are walking all over the roof,
And, trying not to annoy us.

I have a lovely, new red broom.
The jasmine is beginning to bloom.
I have a sponge and a brush and a mop,
The grasshoppers laugh and go hop, hop, hop.
I know that no one can make them stop.
The hummingbirds come and knock on the door,
To remind us, just in case.
The squirrels are up and down the trees,
Engaging in a race.
The green lizard’s cleaning the corners,
Which I am unable to reach.
Spring has finally reached us,
And, now you can eat a peach.
I need to put water into the fountains,
So, the blue birds do not faint.
Everything else needs a new coat of paint.
And, I need a facelift,
Or, at least a good smile,
And, I need time to sit on the porch next to you,
And, to hold your hand for a while.

Written by V. Castellanos – April 8, 2020

Wayeb Days

Wayeb Days

It is already Spring again.
Time to start over.
Time to look at myself,
With a really critical eye.

Time to ask,
Where am I going, this time?
And, how far have I already come?
What am I trying to do, this time?
Why am I trying to do it?

The high stepping Centaur has drawn his bow.
He wants to know,
And, both of the heads of Janus are asking.
The fishes,
The one going the right way,
And, the one going the other,
Have their questions, too.

Some of them are asking when.
Some are asking where.
One is even asking,
Do you really care?
There is tension in the air.

I am considering what the Winter said.
The equinox is still ahead.
I am considering the cold, cruel reality of payback,
Of karma attack.
The solstice-spin, flip-over, make over,
Dance in the clover,
The upright-seeking,
Gyroscopic, point-of-return,
Or, no-return,
Rounding out the corners.

These are my personal Wayeb Days,
Not the forced fun,
Saturnalia Days of puff and fluff,
And, Happy Holiday Wishes to you.
These are days ruled by the unfamiliar gods,
Thirteen times further away,
Than anybody else.
These are the days that don’t fit in.
The nameless days, fallen in between the cracks of time,
When the sun and the moon are reconciling and reconsidering,
When there is nothing to do,
But hold your breath.
The days in the down and under.
The days on the wrong side of the night,
The wrong side of the earth,
The wrong side of the wobble of the universe.
The look back, swallow-me-up, black-hole days.

But, don’t stay here.
This won’t last forever.
What does it matter,
What I think of myself?
Who can prevent themselves,
From unfolding into who they are?
No such thing as free will.

Disregarding rejections,
Changing my selections,
Erasing my imperfections,
Besides being impossible,
Would probably be inhuman.

After a while Spring will really heat up,
And, clowns will be dancing in the streets.
Back in the days when we danced,
Around May poles,
And, burnt Zozobra in the Square,
Carnival was a serious thing.
Everyone was required,
To write poetry about themselves,
And, satire came of age.

Today nobody knows himself,
Because we don’t have to.
So, why should I care?
Why should I go through this?
What does it matter?
We’ve got ourselves a new calender now.
Gregorian, artificial, more or less accurate,
Tied to the mind more than the heavens,
So, just throw away those old Wayeb Days.
No one is really interested,
And, it will all be the same in a hundred years.

Suddenly, I am concerned about you.
Where have you gone to in all of this darkness?

It is midnight and I want to give you a kiss.
V. Castellanos – 2015

The Flute Player

Tonight is almost a spring night,
And, they say the Flute Player is already in town.
He has come to stir up the wind,
And, to announce the arrival,
Of the Circus of Clouds.

This is the time I go back to the Everglades,
Where the land is just a handful of powdered limestone,
Scattered gossamer over a white dragon’s skin.
But, after forty thousand years,
It has gathered a coating of metal skinned dragonflies.

The flowers have come out early this year.
The scent of lilies is in the air,
And, they are searching for raindrops.
But, the clouds are too young to understand.

The Flute Player,
Knowing how long Spring can take to awake,
Has climbed to the top of the pine tree,
And, gone to sleep in the black bird’s nest.

He will wait until the circus is over,
Until the clouds have stopped playing,
And, are ready for serious business.

The white moon would have liked,
To help the spring gather the clouds.
She would have liked,
To help the Flute Player stir up the wind.
But, all too soon her time was up.
After considering everything,
In between yesterday and tomorrow,
She decided to leave,
Threw away her halo,
Dissolved into a hopeful, blue mirage.

This morning a thousand birds,
Rise up with the sun.
Another thousand rise behind them.
They do not consider leaving.
They are offering their shadows to the clouds,
Because the clouds are still too full of light,
And, the birds love the taste of rain.

It appears, in the process of being born again,
The clouds have forgotten everything,
But, they are getting reacquainted with their designs.
Soon they will be feasting on one another’s dreams.
They will be holding hands and sharing ideas.

The wind is stirring on the other side of the horizon.
He is looking forward to the taste of rain.
He is turning yesterday,
Into buff colored dust,
Into a handful of powdered limestone,
Scattered over a white dragon’s skin.
He is turning yesterday,
Into a covering of metal skinned dragonflies.
After considering everything,
In between yesterday and tomorrow,
He has decided that today is already almost over.

The alligators, patiently chewing on snails,
Consider that the moon,
Who has dissolved and disappeared,
Has perhaps become a twinkle in the Flute Player’s eye.
They consider that the moon,
Has perhaps turned into a dew drop,
Before the rise of the sun,
Just to show the clouds it can be done.

The alligators are looking forward to taste the rain.

They do not consider leaving,
Because they know, when the rains return,
They will be immense and devour the sky.
They will dress in armor and lightning.
They will feed the palmettos,
The heron and the hurricanes.
They will be mightier than our imagination.

By then the Flute Player will be gone,
Over the blue horizon,
Dissolved into a hopeful, blue mirage,
And, my only protection will have to come,
From the thick perfume of the black mud,
From the swirling water under foot,
From the dry, sharp teeth of the saw grass,
And, the spiders as big as my hand.

This morning a thousand metal skinned dragonflies,
Who have been here for forty thousand years,
Have settled down on the white dragon’s skin,
Another thousand settled behind them.
The absurd circus is finally over,
And, the clouds are discussing empires.

I have climbed to the top of the pine trees.
I have thrown away my halo,
And, dissolved into a hopeful, blue mirage,
Learning to play my own flute.

I would like to stir up the white moon.
I would like to stir up the wind.
I am offering my shadow to the clouds,
Because I am thirsting for the taste of rain.

I have become a twinkle in the Flute Player’s eyes.
In between yesterday and tomorrow.
I am asleep in the black bird’s nest.
And, I am becoming well acquainted with my dreams.

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