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Journeys of the Underworld

June 1, 2009

I found myself going down, down
into the darkness of
the cavity of neverending cave
And in that darkness
Iridescent light revealed
ghastly, tortured masks
of souls in agony
Frozen forever in their pain.

Down past the painful parade
I tumbled and fell,
Into the realm of beasts
and primitive practices.
I could hear the tribal drums
and visions came to me
of blood-curling rituals
as shamans cut out the hearts
of sacrifical offerings
and held them up
to the Gods
in the moonlight
as they sang their mournful song
of lost souls
and guided them
down avenues long forgotten
back to the heart of Life.

I tumbled past the hunter,
the murderer with poised knife,
calm nerves,
mouth twisted in anger and revenge
as he braced himself for the kill.

I tumbled past the forlorn mother
forever wandering in twilight
seeking her stillborn child
and grieving incessantly.

I tumbled into the fire
of ever-burning hatred
bent on destroying
everything in its path,
And I came out of that flame
charred, but alive
left only with that shining glory
which cannot be destroyed.

I suffered the turmoil of banishment
as friend and foe alike
turned their backs on me
and I wandered alone
lost in the mirages
of old and worn experiences
begging over and over for revival.

I fell on and on
ever tumbling head over heels
not knowing which way was aright
Until I came face to face
with the part of me
who had committed every sin
every injustice
every blasphemy,
the ugly troll hiding under
the rainbow bridge,

And I faced myself with steady eyes
and looked deep and long
into the wounds
that created this creature….

And I forgave.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. George Trout permalink
    August 20, 2009 1:18 pm

    Linda…. You have told the story of my life with this poem.
    I can’t thank you enough for this. Maybe someday I will explain line by line what each verse means to me… And we had just met and yet you knew.

    • lindacostello permalink
      August 20, 2009 1:31 pm

      Thanks, George. I wrote it years ago, as you know. It’s full of archetypes of the hero that goes down into the underworld, the dark night of the soul, and finds him/her self. It was also MY life story at the time.

      Thanks for reading.

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