A Song for the Lost Maiden

Lady, I know things must pass.

                            But I want her back.

She who played in the woods and danced under the trees.

who lay and formed a circle on the ground, her body 

                                                                           with his body 

perfectly reflecting the infinite Beloved.

          She walked in Joy.

The ground was soft under her feet and her heart was light, 

                                            and she could dance with perfect ease

and trusted perfectly.


I know all things must pass.

                                   The maiden’s innocence cannot last.

But must be ripped open to birth new life.

             Ripped by betrayal, by doubt and disappointment.

Opened with the pain of 

                          wondering whether she imagined all that perfect beauty.

For surely it could not just have melted with the daylight.

As it did
                                                       as it always does.

I know – it cannot last, any more than

                                           a tree can stay in bloom all year.

The maiden ripens into mother, 

                              and there shall be sacrifice and tears,

there shall be deeper joy, and wider purpose.

I know.

But I long for her, still.

Perhaps she dwells deep inside me, 

                         hand in hand with the Grandmother to come.

Somewhere, she still dances, and still laughs

                                                        and cries


Somewhere I still have that

                     perfect trust, unbroken.


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A Song for the Lost Maiden — 2 Comments

  1. Jani, I really love this, because it really does speak to me. At 63 I’m still asking: where did me the 19 year old go? My daughter (32, astoundingly sussed, amazingly gifted, beautiful, more adult I think than I’ve ever been) got married this July and I’m hugely proud of her, of my achievement as a mother (i.e. I was a good-enough mother so that I didn’t totally fuck her up, and my insistence that she do what SHE wanted not what someone else, including me, wanted, seems – I think – to have taken
    ). But still, facing late middle age, crepe-y neck, age spots, tiredness, sagginess, all the crap, I’m still saying WHAT HAPPENED? So thank you!