Detail from cover artwork by Christina Mowle ©

Quest, occupation, something to do...

Five Poems for Crone Kronos

i)
What is most ancient is young.
What most recent the stuff of the old.
No mystery here, just any living thing,
being brave, being bold.

Once upon a time there was an old woman. Call her God, call her Crone Kronos, or call her The Enemy. Her problem was she was bored. She looked at a stone and the stone eroded. She looked at an atom and the atom exploded - or did not explode. It wasn't good enough. She wanted interaction, a voluntary response. And therefore she invented life. Thereafter consciousness. Thereafter language. And thereafter poetry, which made her so excessively cross she refused to speak, because then we reproached her and tried to say what cannot be said, and to tell the tale that may not be told.

ii)
In her garden a toad and a toadstool,
no bench for the aged to sit upon.
In her garden lies and lullabyes,
this season's flowers, not yet shop-
soiled,
for the casual consumer to light upon.
In her garden a very old woman,
blighting and blessing
whatever she chooses to chance upon.

iii)A Prayer
Let me be your grand-child,
let me be you great grand-child
- some descendant,
so that,
whatever the loss and dissolution
I am not, altogether, disinherited.
iv)
Are you capable of kindness, saying,
"Sleep, baby, sleep?" Are you capable
of granting some extraordinary gift,
so that suddenly I'm able to fly
or to treat whole forests like so many
toothpicks?
Yes, I know,
you are capable of anything.

v)
Children should not rage, the puny should not fight.
Who can know your innermost thought when your most
horrid and eager dreams play out their birthright?

Suniti Namjoshi
Building Babel, Spinifex, 1996

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