Sunday: August 23, 1987: 2320
S w e e t   M a d n e s s
©2003   Jerral Sapienza & LLX Press

A fitful tale of medieval jealousy and revenge
Jerral Sapienza
Crinoline capes had fallen, Alice, here upon the bedroom floor.
And know, my dear, 'twas I who bade the doors be bolted home.
For if our sweet impassioned loves had risen any higher more
We'd know there'd be no recompense for tattered burdensome

beginnings where we knew we'd one day lose our better judgments' sight 
of all we do and all we knew when there our love was lithe and young.
Don't think me mad, my love, but think me locked within this womb so tight 
that none could ever share my fears or tears or folly 

Oh, no, My Love, I bore no harsher disposition than the rule
Please speak my absolution clearly-- tell me you here all forgave
my trifling breach; I never sinned without a reason-- don't be cruel!
Remember all the lavish gifts I give you when you just behave.

Oh, Speak Again, Dark Angel Mine; don't just lie there, scarlet heap
So full of life when he was here, I saw you both rejoice
But now your silence bears within a secret that you keep?
Please speak again, my Tainted Cherub, deny me not that voice!


Then, well, I understand. I see.  He's better here than I could be.
But doesn't life need life to see that tattered partiality?
I gave to thee the seeds of freedom, wingèd treatise, breezes free,
You once agreed to be the bride I needed, bound in honesty.

Ah, no?. . . I thought it done too well-- I'll call the doctor don't you move:
You both-- now motionless-- before were such good lovers, were you so?
But now just mounds who coughed and sputtered, retired forevermore in love
I clearly (cogent still, My Love) will miss your touch.  Ahh.. must you go?


The stars are out tonight, you see?
The same, I think, were out that night 
when you first made sweet love to me
and swore to me that all was right.

Our love still burns within us, Alice,
Doesn't it?  Why don't you speak?
Ah, drunk, I see from sleep's sweet chalice
I'll not disturb you there so weak.

Don't worry, Love, I'll wait your waking
All the night if stars will stay
The hours retire but not worth taking
if your love has gone away. . .
   -- 0013
What an interesting perspective this one requires... Has a touch of classical hyperbole and some just plain madness in our fellow's tragic personality.

It is told from first person as though you are in the mind of a super-jealous husband who has just in a fit of rage killed both his wife and her lover. He walks in on them in their passion and just loses it, killing them both. And no, before you get to drawing conclusions: this isn't autobigraphical, though if it were, I'm afraid I'd be the dead one!   :-)

Our fitful protagonist here is (Part I) at the post-coitus bedside of his quite dead wife and murdered lover, speaking with her in wooing, cooing almost apologetic tones trying to get her to recognize him as she lay in a bloodied heap in her lover's arms.   The husband says he may have occasionally made a trifling mistake here & there, but for the most part, all his material gifts he's heaped on her over the years, combined with the gilded cage he built for her, should surely help her recognize him as her only True Love! (yeah, right!)

There's a bit of an odd resignation in him then somehow (Part II) as he sees her no longer a challenge or antagonist. He even seems to recognize that she did indeed love this guy, and that they were "such good lovers", though he seems to be somewhat disconnected as to why she's "motionless", failing to recognize his own hand in the matter! No doubt his "if I can't have you, then no one can" mentality, combined with a doubt of his own self-worth and a fitful rage triggers these untimely ends.

Yet strangely, then, seeing his wife's passion with this competitor triggers in our madman a nearly wistful memory (Part III) of when they two were courting in love, in those rueful days when magic still held and they seemed destined for happiness and marital bliss.   Reality, one supposes, must have intervened?

Odd tone I chose to adopt for this one... Must be some of my left-over Middle Ages Poet passion catapulted thru my castle window. After all, that's the tone & flavor I saw when I wrote it. (This one was a rather slow poem by my standards... took almost an hour to write, from start to finish.)

:-)   -J     (Ed. Early '96)

© 2003 by Jerral Sapienza • Lifelong Learning Excellence, Inc. • PO Box 380 • Eugene, OR • USA 541.343-1202
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