The rainbow at the world’s end

Jane Dougherty Writes

Painting by Archip Iwanowitsch Kuindshi

Archip_Iwanowitsch_Kuindshi_009

Red the bloody cloud in the river,

Green the iris spears piercing the mud,

Yellow the celandine creeping so deftly

Over the orange of rusting blades.

Steel grey the rain on the trampled meadow,

Blue the smoke from the funeral pyres,

Purple the haze on the poisoned pools

Where carcasses caracole bloated and pale.

Silver by moonlight the silent lagoon,

Violet by day, a stagnant pool,

Still as the grave at the ocean’s edge,

A pewter cup full of indigo tears.

And pearl the mist that hazes the moon,

On this night of rejoicing beneath the dark stars,

The bright crystal shards rain to dead voices keening,

A myriad lives broken at the rainbow’s end.

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