“‘Red skies at night, sailors’ delight; red skies in the morning, sailors’ warning,’
So speaks the wisdom of sky and sea,” Ma’at grabbed my waist band with strong hand;
“The far horizon is dizened rouge, my love, and it is morning, so this is a warning
For all who can see,” then she looked at me. “Are you blind, or can this you find?”
But I missed the intent of her query so remained content in silence, and to relent
To words wizened through the eons, prepared to offer my paean to the Aegean goddess.
“Do you remember the tower of power, Maftet showed you? Frozen for the ill-chosen?”
My head nodded as Ma’at led me out onto the balcony. “It was agony for this world,
But that was the Second Dawning you saw, slowly yawning; Dyēus turned celestial page
And so began another age, this age whose page is now full-worn and ready to be torn.”
My face was forlorn, “The prophets of doom and gloom are right, the end is in sight?”
Ma’at smiled, “No, the sun sets on this age for another world begun, heavenly spun.”
Why, then, warning of the red dawn morning? Unfurled, what would be this new world?
“Alarming, isn’t it?” Ma’at intoned as she hurled me once more thru space and time;
“Trace the lines of history and you find much misery, yet too much good and true.”
An ancient room now, fragrant with incense and dense with myriad flowers and trees,
And birds and bees; royally furnished with gold, silver and bright burnished wood;
“My honeycomb home!” she wildly laughed; I mildly smiled. “Your home, too, my child.”
Beauty astounding, resounding with echoes of another sphere and me merely human;
“From here you will see,” Ma’at still laughed at the thrill of it all; I felt so small;
An unearthly chill ran down my spine, but with ever goodwill she said, “I will fulfill
And kill your burning curiosity, and calm the churning of your quivering soul.”
With practiced sly-skill she led me into another chamber with obviously no danger;
“Here is an ember from the timber of the first tree,” showing me the glowing rock.
“This ember will the three mothers ~ Sélená, Cybele and Kheba, treble sisters terrible
In power ~ take and cast into everlasting sun, then shall the new world have begun.
And this will be the Third Dawning, but not yawning as the Second; no, this will come
In quick flight, in fright and terror; as bearer of destruction and reconstruction.”
My head shook dismayed as I prayed; “But my vision was not of apocalyptic collision
Or damnation and mutation! There was beauty and wonder, no cruelty or plunder!”
“Ah, my child, you’ve always heard the calm before the storm, but really the balm
Is the storm before the calm.” Ma’at gently stroked my pale face with trace of love;
“Brace yourself for the vase to be out-poured upon the earth; embrace all grace
Offered by heaven to leaven your life without strife; you’ve only seen in small part,
Like the false prophets, as if dimly through glass, but they’re crass, cunning asses!
You are true, though oh-so imperfect, and have found profound favor with Sélená.”
“There is here much to see, so be brave not knave,” Ma’at spoke firmly with poke
To my chest for me to be my best. “But not yet; you are tired and beset with worry;
Lie down here next to me, and drown yourself inside my gown, flesh to fresh flesh.”
Note: Second picture 19th century print of the Interior of an Ancient Egyptian Palace by Charpentier — Image by Gianni Dagli