The fantasy is over, dear,

bugle

yes, over. The poisoned apple has lost its bite,
the spinning needle its thirst, the glass slipper
its soft, swift step. In the castle’s kitchen
the larder is empty, the chopping boards dusty,
the ovens gone cold…echoes reverberate where
chefs once turned spits and made fantastical
marzipan statues and petit fours. The grand hall
sits empty, the tables removed, the curtains
drawn and dark, the hearths empty of their roar.
And although the guests have long since left
and the orchestra is merely a forgotten melody,
an old couple sits there still, silently staring,
gazing into the gloom, remembering. There,
as bated as a breath and as winsome as a wish
they see the ghostly consort and his queen
dance into and out of the silvery night,
she the beauty of the ball, he the cup of her
largesse and they the stuff of some forever—
but still, soon, too soon, gone. Come my queen,
says the old man taking her arm, it is time.

up

Another poem for my wonderful, beautiful and so patient wife, Lyn. How she puts up with me I do not understand.

Thank you for reading The fantasy is over, dear, and I humbly appreciate your visiting the Book of Pain. As always, I look forward to your comments.

The photograph is entitled Come blow your horn and was taken at 30 Rockefeller Square in New York City, where the Toy Soldier statues are a traditional part of the yearly Christmas decorations there. For more photography, please visit the Book of Bokeh.

john

Photograph, poem and notes © 2014 by John Etheridge; all rights reserved. The poem and accompanying notes are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. This applies to all original written work found on this site, unless noted otherwise. The attribution claimed under the license is: © 2014 by John Etheridge, https://bookofpain.wordpress.com. The photograph is not licensed for use or reproduction in any way, unless so granted in writing by the copyright owner.

Advertisements

3 Comments

Filed under Poetry

3 responses to “The fantasy is over, dear,

  1. This reminded me of the Nutcracker! Such vivid imagery, John, it was delightful

    Elizabeth

    • And I blame it all on your fantastical poetry. You are a bad influence on me, you are, you fill my head with worlds that are only in my head. Actually, thank you. I wanted to make the scene real to cement the concept of ‘fantasy’ with fairy tale at the start, to make it clear at the end that fantasy really means ‘the not true delusion of dreams’ while the magical nature of the fairy tale can still be very real in a marriage. Anyway that was what I was going for. My queen has not yet had time to read it, so I am not yet sure what she thinks of it. We have both been stressed for time lately…

      • I’ll very happily take that blame, this is one of the nicest compliments ever! I’m sure your queen will be delighted, in fact, I’ll eat my socks if she is not

        Lily