Treasure Island

MacGregor Tagliaferro


Pale Love, Pale Rider


In the depths of a stormy night
Suddenly roused from restless sleep
Swept by a silent chilly wind,
He felt a hand on his shoulder
And he heard a sensuous voice,
With an echo as old as time,
Call to him and say; Come and see!
He tried to speak, but he could not
He tried to resist, but could not
He moved as if he were floating,
And he followed Her where She led;
Out of the house, into the yard,
Down the caliche road, over
The cattle guard, past the Blowout
They stopped in a quiet pasture
Beside a corral with four gates

She turned and opened the first gate
There before him was a white horse
Ridden by a pretty woman
Wearing a long flowing white robe
Horse and rider walked towards him
Then she reached down and touched his head
And said; 'Pledge yourself in return
For eternal lucidity'

Then She opened the second gate
Another horse, red, galloped out
Ridden by a red-haired woman
Who was carrying a bottle
And she said; 'Drink the blood red wine
Harden your heart for what awaits:
Pale shades of love, abandoned love,
And random love and shadow love'

Then She unbolted the third gate
There before him was a black horse
Its rider, a dark-haired beauty,
Reined up smartly right beside him
The rider reached and touched his eyes
And said; 'Now you have vision
To see into what lies beyond
Believe in the unforgiven'

Then She swung open the fourth gate
He looked and there was a pale horse
Its rider, blonde haired and grey eyed,
Strikingly pretty and naked,
Slipped off the horse and approached him
She took his hand and said; 'Take me
Take me, consummate your promise
Come, choose what must be chosen'

Desire pulsed throughout his body
The hunger, the need and the want
Overtook him and he gave in
Allowing her to pull him down
And inside her, and she urged him
On and on, faster and harder
Incessant friction hot and wet
A crescendo of pain, pleasure

Souls and seed now intermingled
Low manic laughter from somewhere
Eyes that were once grey, now pitch black
In them, something, a reflection
Pain, so much pain, ever after
Visions that can't be avoided
A new truth, must accept as is
Howling in anguish in the dark

Awake in their bed, sore and bruised
So careful not to disturb her
Up, dressed; boots, cowboy hat and coat
Down to the barn, open the door
There in the first stall; the pale horse
Blanket, saddle, cinch tight, gear checked
Mounted on the pale horse, riding
Wandering, wild in his sorrow
Searching for what cannot be found
Reflections of his misery
Days given to wrangling regrets
Nights given to darkest desires
Know this; Foreshadowed is forewarned
And forewarned is fully forearmed
When the Pale Rider, this way comes,
Heartbreak follows close behind him

© 2013 Cowboy Coleridge All rights reserved

Submitted: Monday, November 04, 2013
Edited: Tuesday, November 05, 2013

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

For the Dark Muse November 2013 out west

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