The Dog Star Poem by Tom Billsborough

The Dog Star

Sirius rising, seed of power..
Wind rode or tide rode
A reed boat sways the whole night,
Straining at anchor.

The papyrus dawn stretches.
The pale East trembles.
The priest too. Who knows.

Red sails tether
The dawn breeze.
The Nile renews her annual surrender.

Sirius rising, seed of power..
In this man's soul
What joy to compose its shell,
The hollow ritual!

Monday, June 20, 2016
Topic(s) of this poem: religion
Pamela Sinicrope 20 June 2016

Nicely written poem. I like the flow and the imagery of it. Nothing like the image of a man floating down the Nile and looking up to the starts. I wasn't aware of the significance of Sirius, so looked it it marks the flooding the of the Nile, the beginning of the summer solstice, the wakening of female desire and the weakening of men? So...a time of uncertainty and change. I really enjoyed the last stanza of the poem. It leaves one wanting and unsettled. I would think exactly the way the viewing of Sirius might leave the speaker in the poem. I really enjoyed this one....

1 1 Reply
Tom Billsborough 21 June 2016

The Astronomical knowledge of Sirius rising at the Nile's Flooding was noticed by learned men who developed that secret knowledge into a powerful priesthood. i think this later developed into the rule of the Pharoahs! It is amazing that this small germ of an idea. cloaked by elaborate rituals, should lead to such power and I likened it in a way to a poem which often starts with an image which we cloak in rhythms and rhymes to create a powerful effect. i suppose the English Equivalent would be the Midsummer Festival and places such as Stonehenge. Science was very important, even then. Paul Valery said the dream is knowledge I think many discoveries come in dreams too. Tom

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Tom Billsborough

Tom Billsborough

Preston Lancashire England
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