The Marble Castle

Jackson Leathem



In reflection I peer through the mind’s eye

A world of seeming beauty

In all the wealth of life, I wander

Trampling the grass beneath my feet

Inheriting the surrounding air

I spot a girl

A girl, white and gleaming among the trees

I hide In wreathing awe at her gentle grace

whispers wrap about her ankles

She cries a sigh as she looks upon the ground

The river glimmers that night as we share the land

I approach, my throat constricted

The moons judge my decision

I release only a murmur, and she is frightened

clenching the reeds beneath her

I freeze, and she begins to calm

I point to the stars above, the stars in which I am from

and where I am going

The trees watch bewildered

Never have I had such beauty before me

She bows then, turning away with a sprint

The soil beneath us speak as we break it

and the river begins in spirals around my body

I collapse as she furthers

I grasp an insect of the earth

Buzzing in my palm it stirs

I am guided through the forest

The embodiment of Bears, Wolves, and Elk protect me

Their teeth, sharp and tainted, take me forward

I float over the mountains like fog, seeing the girl below me

I let her know she’s safe by a gesture

The water cradles us to a Castle of Marble

situated at the edge of a gully

The gate is cold and moist to the touch

Inside of the courtyard we sing of our lives, and of friends

Our hearts grow fond, and our minds tired

A canoe sits on the lake

My vessel to the sky

She seeks a kiss upon her brow that will lighten the good-bye

to our loved ones we will return

She settles on the Castle floor, as through the wall my ship awaits

Into the sky the river will release me

The moon grows older and grey

I sigh at the earth for its limits

for a dream dies only to those who are alive