Yin Yang or the Twig that loved Venus
Ephemeral Venus, disappeared into the light
Thunderous my heart feels when I lose thy sight
A numbness that crawls through my spleen –
like a parasite cherishing pain and feeding clean.
I am no tree or stone, yet wait for the day
To go by unmoved, waiting for the time when the heat goes away
And the warmth builds in. Never mind the moon,
or the painted clouds – I look for thy brightness to swoon.
Faint is my hope, but hope there is
To dream of reaching thee – most benevolent of entities.
I stand on the land of shadows – musing on
Thy laughter. Loftier gets my love far out from this scion.
Malevolent is my existence, O pearly eyed goddess –
Shifted and turned by every tide of the abyss.
Lend me thy glow, an incidental one would suffice
To transform this beast to a merrier reprice.
What depths have I swum to absorb thy radiance?
I freed myself of this damned decadence –
Learnt to fly from the pool of fire,
All to see you illuminate thy soul for me to admire.
My dreadful mind could not perceive – the efforts
Put were in a dream. I was the marionette with hollow culverts,
Stringed by shadows playing my tragic songs –
Demonic their will, locking me in dreams to amuse their wrongs.
Orpheus, plucking his lyre, in search of Eurydice – his lost price –
Halted those shadows and helped me to Paradise.
Divine his commitment and forever his bereavement –
Yet – he wills to search; Orpheus – a pure soul without entanglement.
With the demons asleep and voices awake –
His spirit infused within, I cut the fuming strings from the fiery lake;
Turned to reality instead of fantasy,
Gazing at the sky thinking “what did my fate foresee?”
Questions infinite that ponder and the void answers; Devouring
My grit. Still, my trinity (body, mind and soul) keeps wandering
To find thy existence – internal or external.
On top of the most perilous mountain, I saw thy light – gracefully exceptional.
In hope, re-ignited, I started the ascent –
Wondering of the menaces making the journey unpleasant.
In between, the shadows lurked scary, fiery, malignant-
Like they love to be. A few slithering like a giant serpent.
The path was obstructed, with madness, darkness reflecting their behove-
Repeating themselves for a magical word. “Love”,
I said; the beasts fell to the abyss whence they came –
Allowing me to reach my dearly passionate flame.
Angel Oak that stands alone, calling upon me –
I, scampering for the summit, tumbling often to reach the tree.
Scratches, body can endure, I forgot when touched with the Oak –
But, the soul was scathed, to find my light caressing the invisibility cloak.
O my horrendous fate, this vision does not justify
The boundless devotion for my beloved. She can sanctify
My whole and take me off this wretched world –
“What madness drove you to predict a future this cold?”
Hidden under a rock, a rare sea shell – broken with a beak,
Perfectly sharp for the last labor. A rope I seek
From the reed and to write our names – piercing
The angel ensuring an imperishable marking
Of what we are, I the Yang, You the Yin
Forever this world, will remember our confession therein.
Now my dear, I hang for this tree where our fates are eternally bound,
There my skeleton lies tortured by the winds with howling sound.
My soul seeks thy shelter, flying out for you –
Accept my whole and create me new.
My harvest is ready, sun’s the witness, it is glorious with eternal shine,
Flapping am I with dazzling wings to reach you, O darling mine.
Summary of the poem
The speaker compares his love to Venus that appears in the sky. He feels heartbroken whenever the morning light takes away the sight of the planet. A numb feeling covers the speaker making him stagnant till the sun goes away. When the night arrives, he does not care for the moon or the clouds but seeks the brightness provided by Venus so that he can faint into the world of his own.
Hope is very little for the speaker as he is like a twig marvelling at a “benevolent entity” without any movement. He resides in the land of shadows where everything is dark and his only respite is the laughter felt from Venus.
A glimpse of the predicament of the speaker is given in the beginning of Stanza IV where he describes his existence as “malevolent”. However, his efforts are to get out of the abyss where there is constant churning and temptations with the help of Venus. Speaker says that he has swum the depths of abyss and flown through pool of fire in Hades in expectance of illumination from Venus to the person who admires her lot.
The speaker suddenly realizes that his mind was put in a trance and all his efforts took place in a dream. He was played like a marionette and the shadows were the masters making him play the tragic songs so that they can laugh and satisfy their sinful intents. To the amazement of the speakers, Orpheus comes to the land of shadows singing about Eurydice and he mesmerizes the shadows through his lyre. He praises Orpheus for his never ending love and his eternal search for then he loves.
With the inspiration of Orpheus, the speaker finds a new voice and returns to realty from the hallucinations of shadows in order to reach his Venus. As the speaker comes to realty, he finds that there are many barriers and questions that need answering. But, he persists on finding his love disregarding the norms and concludes that he will find Venus physically or spiritually. As he increases his resolve, he finds a light on the top of a mountain and starts to make the ascent.
Shadows pose a challenge to the speaker and do not make his climb to the light of Venus that easy. They form into the shape of a huge snake and obstruct his path. The snake threatens the speaker that there would be no going further without a password. The speaker simply answers LOVE and the shadows disappear. Speaker looks at the top to find an Oak tree standing alone looking for someone to reach the place. He hurries, falling sometimes and stumbling sometimes, hurting himself so to reach the place as soon as possible.
Once again, all the efforts of the speaker are for nothing as he finds nothing near the Oak. He feels that all the bruises to his body heal from reaching the place but finds his soul scathed with the absence of the light of Venus that he so longed to find. He curses Fate for writing such a horrible twist and feels that the twist does not justify the admiration he has for Venus. Speaker firmly believes that her light can complete him and liberate him from the world of horrors – hell and earth.
The speaker cannot tolerate the absence of his love and resolves to leave one final mark before seeking death. He finds a seashell, a symbolic representation of Venus that is broken sharp by a bird’s beak. With the help of it, he writes his name and the name of his love as YIN and YANG. Yin-Yang is a powerful symbol in Chinese philosophy where the belief of being whole is stronger than being separated as parts. He makes rope with the reed surrounding the Oak tree to hang himself.
He claims that the Angel Oak will make his love eternal through the engraved names and hangs to death – in time the body rots and becomes a skeleton. However, the soul of the speaker never leaves the feelings for Venus and continues the ascent from the Oak Tree to the constellation to reach for Venus. After death, the speaker finds his soul to be reinvigorated with love and develops wings to reach for the skies.