Sunday, November 21, 2010

The First Frost

Sorry, but this is what comes out at 5:30 in the morning. Maybe I'll come back and edit it. Maybe not. Maybe I'll write a sequal entitled "The First Snow" or maybe not, Eh. I'm gonna go sleep now. :P

When Evening Shade has dropped her cowl
Across the face of the vaults of Heaven
Star studded obsidian veil
Shimmering in the late fall night

Then rise the Moon, the glorious Queen
Her fullness round and beaming brightly
Raise her head through Darkness cowl
Laughing moonbeams upon the sleeping Earth

A whisper wafts upon the willow leaves
Curls about the ivy, rustle the rue
Upon the air currents runs a laughter
A puckish voice within the green

Then from the Emerald Deeps come lanterns
Dim stars shining upon the earth
Their lights caught deep within the mushrooms
Paraded forth by the little folk

Lines and lines of the wee running ones
Their torches held like flicker flames
A sea of candles upon the forest floor
No word is spoken, these are not summer games

They have all come now, to the old oak
Its viridian foliage gilt with gold
The gnarlled and twisted white bark
Creaks in reply to the anxious faces

When suddenly the wind whispers near
Kicks the leafy carpet of brown
A laugh is upon the breath of heaven
The wee folk draw nearer the base of the oak

And stepping out of the deepest darkness
The night itself about his shoulders hung
With skin as white as the Moon his mother,
Stepped the Prince of Ice, her son

Where ever his booted foot took step
A frost cracked as it spread on the ground
The air grew still and turned all to silver
As beating breaths came out like smoke

"I have come to thee, oh Forest Lord,
To claim what is mine by right of law
The seasons bid you hand now over
All your power to Winter's maw."

The ancient oak, its blackened seams
Creaked in reply a breathy voice
That rose from the hollow of its base
Like a silent whisper of the woods themselves

"Prince of Ice, your claim is heard
But here today you shall not prevail.
Your claim must first be prove'd still
Before these ones work to your avail."

So the Prince of Ice in furor rose
And walked the glen towards the King
But ere he passed within harming's reach
He stepped within the mushroom ring

"Come no further, you shall dare not.
The ground you step upon is mine alone
If you wish to make your claim tonight
You must first mark all you would make your own."

So retreated he from the Oaken Glade
And took upon the wings of night
And looked he far for the wandering shade
Who took many forms by the moonlight

Robin Goodfellow called was he
At least by some in some forms he would take
Puck, Trickster, Thief, Green Boy
When the moon was full none could place him

But the Prince of Ice knew he plan now lay
Upon the shoulders of the impish lad
For there was one form that Puck could take
So that all the lands by the Prince could be had

So flying high and flying low,
Across the sea and land
Searching forest, mountains, glades, fields
The hidden depths and foreign strands

But nowhere could he spot the imp
And so with feverish dispair
He cried unto his mother the moon,
"Mother! I can't find him anywhere!"

The guiding moon her soft radiant glow
Smiled down upon her child
And her lights gathered upon the forest
A place most savage and most wild

And there within the darkened bough
Beneath the willow curtain
Lay that impish boy called Puck asleep
On a bed of chamomile and lavender

"Puck! Robin! Whatever your name be!
Halt and I would have words with thee!"
"Nay, but sir I must away from here
For daylight soon shall appear,"

"Noble Puck, please hear my plea
If thou help me, I shall reward thee."
"What kind of reward?"

"Anything, anything thou desire,
Name it but, and it shall be thine.
But please, take form tonight as me
And help claim all the world as mine."

The imp though quick upon the task
And then with boyish giggling laugh
He declared he would for the proffered prize
And so set he about to make his disguise

He wove about him the same cold skin
The gleam of ice upon his brow
He took upon the same blue weeds
And silver set was his crown

Then with a merry giggle he flew
Across the ponds and woods and glades
And where he went he blew and blew
Upon forest and sea, nymph and neraid

And where his cool kiss did come
A sheath as cold as death itself
Hard as adamant, pure as pearl
And sharp as the diamond's point

The crystal dust he blew and threw
And painted upon each blade of grass
He rushed it along the river path
Enjoying his silvery task

Then came he upon dryad glade
And melting into the black guise
Crept and fell over their frames as a shade
And blew sweetly upon them the ice

Dancing upon river, writing upon glass
Dusting the world with his diamonds
He circled the land and returned again
And was hailed by the Prince of Ice

"Well done sweet Puck, they work is grand
Thou has taken my visage and done to the accord
And covered every inch of the land
Now, good imp, name thy reward."

"You Prince, you say, you are put a Prince
And carry not yet the title of King.
So how is it that you shall gain authority
To rule over everything?"

The imps question was met with reply
Both short and to the point
"I shall marry the Princess of Snow,
Then shall all my power know."

"Then my mind is made, I know what I want
To meet this Princess of Snow."
"Then follow me, thou sly sprite
And away to her castle, we shall go!"

Her castle stood on the farthest shore
Where monuments of ice stood firm
And mountains moved in waters cold
White as snow was all around

The two walked into the High Gate
And up the stairs to the throneroom
They passed into the presence of her
Whom all knew as Lady Winter

"Who comes here now at this hour?
The world seems colder to my taste.
Who threatens the serenity of my bower?
Speak now, both of you make haste!"

"I come imploring your hand princess,
For now having seen your face.
I would rather die here upon the ice
Than away from thee take a single pace."

"What now, what foolishness is this Robin?"
Cried the shocked and outraged Prince
"You are nothing but a rude forest imp
This treachery comes, from wence?"

"My name is not Robin (at least today)
And I have come a very long way,
To tell you, my name is Jack Frost
And I would have thy heart at any cost."

The Lady of Winter looked through her white veil,
Eyes glowed silver with the dancing light
Then stepping forth brought out her hand, pale
And using only a fraction of her might

She pushed both out of her court's door
And they flew from there to the snow cold
And skidded across the icy floor
Till they came to rest in the land of old

Where now all things were covered in Frost
And the Prince drew back in his cloak of night
And Jack Frost stood up, having never lost
Against man or beast or troll a fight

But then the words of the Winter Queen
Echoed through the clearing where they stood
"Foolish you have both now been,
I seek the one who my heart understood."

So they both departed in sorrow and despair,
But as they drew to leave
The Lady of Winter spoke again
So that they would not have reason to grieve

"I depart these lands, but only for a time
Till then you both shall stand
And cover all the world with what is mine
Till Winter has covered the land.

And I shall return to you once more
Once the first snow flake come down
And then whom ever has spread the most, for
him shall I share my crown."

Then the two were off night and day,
Jack Frost and the Prince of Ice
And they worked tirelessly covering the world
And uncovering each other's work in turn

So that is why the first frost came
And that is why it has come ever since
For to this day Jack Frost and the Prince
Still try to win the heart of the Lady Winter

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