A Journey of Words

I followed my dreams beyond the fading day
with Ganymede, Orion and Sagittarius
being no more than stops along my way
as I travelled across the universe.

I dove with Beowulf into the liar of Grendel
watched Gilgamesh as Ingidu came for his throne
The Green Knight’s fear could never fell
one who had claimed the Sword in the Stone

I considered Homer, Virgil, Socrates and Plato
as more than friendly acquaintances of mine.
Mythical gods made me welcome in their courts
toasting my health with their finest wines.

I stood with Priam upon the gates of Troy,
looked on with loathing as that coward Achilles
much like a spoiled brat with a broken toy
dragged Hector by his heels before the walls.

I followed some wise men to Bethlehem,
led there by a bright, shining star
we looked upon that wonderful baby, Him
whose teachings have reached so far.

I followed mountain paths to Cathay
cried for those who fell at Khokand
this desert holds no secrets away
from one borne upon its sifting sands.

I journeyed East to visit Genghis Khan
rode West again with Attila the Hun
Watched in horror as Timur Lame Hand
built his pyramid of skulls in Samarkand.

I stood beneath Lion’s splintered spars
with Nelson off the shores of Trafalgar
and having been there before, already knew
what awaited Napoleon at Waterloo.

I drank from the melted snows of Everest;
Fuji and Kilimanjaro I have stood upon,
waded many oceans deep in my quest
for Paradise or an Island in the Sun.

I watched with helpless rage and fury
as Cardigan and that stupid clown
Raglan in their vain search for glory
sent the Light Brigade to early renown.

I marveled at the wisdom in Bulfinch’s Mythology
thrived on the teachings of Aesop’s Fables
spent many wonderful nights with Scheherazade
puzzled out the morals of Grimm’s Fairy Tales.

I was on the rocks when the Pilgrims came ashore,
while trying to make them welcome there
gave them all I had, they only wanted more
so I left them trembling there in fear.

I started on The Way West with A Rabble in Arms,
changed my mind, had had enough of the Oregon Trail,
decided to go along with The Donner Party,
walked straight into a miserable frozen hell.

I wandered across the Great Divide
basked upon the sand of Western shores,
rode in the red boats of the Chumash
as they were hunting seals across to Alcatraz.

I stood at the foot of Fenian’s Rainbow
searching in vain for his pot of gold
then followed the Father of Waters
down to where the slaves were sold.

I trekked with the Boers as they wandered
across Africa looking for Something of Value,
smelled the fetid breath of the Lion in Evening
near where Prestor John’s life was squandered.

I rode with John Carter, Warlord of Mars
on his search for Princess Dejah Thoris,
braved the raging waters of River Iss
all the way down to the Lost Sea of Korus.

I followed close behind as the Fellowship fled
South to carry the ring to the land of Mordor,
found myself walking the Paths of the Dead
with Elfstone who had opened the Secret Door.

I trudge along a twisted path of wonder
ever hoping to reach my inner self
while others words I choose to ponder
I take another book down from the shelf,

~~~~~Jerry Marks

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