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Her Surreal Highness

Her Surreal Highness,
The Fairie Queen Helen Of Tippie,
The High Duchess of Laney,
Order of the Dreaded Honey Bee Sting [Knight & Plank Owner],
Nurse Most Excellent of the Shire of Greater Bastropia [Ribbons with Flourishes & Bows],
Hottest Reddest Heart Insignia, First Class, Distr. (Education) of Lockhartton,
And dozens more exquisite honours and accomplishments regal,
Was in mourning.…

Sally Gossamer Wingstep, hesitant, took one step,
Then walked slowly onward from her nest;
No fluttering nor soaring above the Fairielands—
Grounded, given the great sadness, she thought best.

In the distance…The Queen’s Tree…
Her great branches weighed down in sorrow.
Betrayed The Fairielands further grief:
There was to be no Queen’s High Tea tomorrow…

Sally felt so awful to feel so awfully angry;
The Queen’s loss was far worse than a missed party.
Even though Jonathan Spider had woven her the finest dress
Which shimmered bright while flowing about her curves smartly.

But the yawning emptiness in the Good Queen’s Castle,
Even the young fairie felt as she struggled with how she was feeling.
She could not grasp the meaning nor see a path ahead;
The sheer suddenness had left all their minds sore and reeling!

Absentmindedly, Sally rounded into Copse Square,
And came face to face her Most Regal Presence!
Wide-eyed, stutter stammering an apology quick,
Sally keenly hoped she was making some sort of sense.

“Oh, my dear Sally, it is you!” Queen Helen said.
“Are we not cavorting across the sky?
Such joy you lend us with your loops and curlicues…
But you are walking, please tell us why.”

Said Sally: “Oh, Your Highness, I thought it improper to fly
When in these dark days we mourn with thee.
We too share in your deep loss, and weep.
We agree on foregoing this year’s High Tea.”

“Nonsense and nettles!” roared the Queen.
“As our spiders weave and the highland bees make honey,
I will care to have our fairies unfurl their wings, to fly,
And so to rule the skies, whether they be dark or sunny!

“So, such and such a time that has as now passed…
Methinks, it is time to move on, I most solemnly decree.
Yes, he has gone, but we shall recall his Royal Goodness—
Sally, care we must and shall host a Great Celebration Tea!”

As swiftly as their wee silken wings could beat the wind,
The fairies carried The Announcement all over and beyond the Fairielands:
All who had furled their wings were to don their most Fun and Glorious Finery,
And TO FLY into the Castle Ballroom with all the Joy such a Fete demands!

At the appointed hour, our fairies looped, soared, fluttered, and flew,
Doing the most ambitious winged acrobatics into the Castle Ballroom;
Even Queen Helen, in her richest Duchess of Laney silver livery,
Flew around such that even the keenest witch could not match on her broom!

Sally Gossamer Wingstep, seized the room—such curlicues and soaring loops!
She was wearing a new shimmery gown, so tight and true to her young frame, without guile.
Her Surreal Highness, The Fairie Queen Helen Of Tippie, The High Duchess of Laney,
Joined in the fairies’ rapturous applause, and did give Sally a nod, and a knowing smile!

Wondrous fruits and cakes and teas were served to the celebrants in abundance.
Her Majesty even allowed the Royal Tea Keeper to let loose the rare jasmine.
From now, and for the time ahead, she would remember the lifting joy
From her subjects as on this night all joined in the grand celebration of him.

So, the Great Celebration Tea ended as a wondrous success—
The Good Fairie Queen went to her rooms while floral aromas caressed the air,
Because surely you know that what is best with good jasmine tea
Is a hearty, loving serving of Tender Laney Care!

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Other Side Of The Coin

Passing thru this life of insufficient glee
I wonder how much better it’d be if she
Would curl up in this place of scarred gloom
And help till some space for love to bloom.
How terrible to be caught in our webs of woe
Lacking energy enough for any friendship to grow;
Get up, reach up, and take this simple, offered hand—
Time for Wine and Smiles and Joy to make a stand!
Yes, a loss is a loss, a stern truth we all know,
But look to the other side of the coin: it’ll show
That we all go on, we all will move forward in the end,
And if you feel you’d like some help, I’d love to be your friend.

The Granite, The Bouquet, and The Sad

The light followed the star over the hill
As the fog rolled in with the cold
Twas a different kind of Christmas story
At least as far as I remember what I was told

A deep abiding affection afflicted the old man
And finally had the means to fulfill a promise
And many, many lonely miles he did trudge to deliver
A last bouquet of daisies to lay before his one fair miss

In younger, luckier days our man had paid fervent troth
To she who now dwelt in yon granite sarcophagus,
But a wrong spoken word had ended it all forever;
Such a piteous loss as to be endured by any one of us.

But our Vanity is a grievously jealous mistress;
And he could not, would not forgive, the slight by his true love.
Such tragedy our old man had scripted in a cold bile ink,
Disparaging of her and placing his wounded veil above.

Carole, the second beauty born of Marble Falls
On one lank Christmas Day between the great wars,
Loved above all Nature’s beauties the blue daisy—
She would fill her Mother’s pots, trestles, and jars.

Silas, our poor fool from a far crescent city east,
Would bring bouquets of blue daisies to ply his troth,
And won her heart, and a date sure was firmly set—
What could possibly set aside such as this Love’s oath?

A sorry, sad mistake came to undo our lover’s story:
Carole observed unartfully our Silas over harsh tone:
As blasted to the quick, Silas cast off his cheery mantle,
And demanded keenly by Carole to be left forever alone!

Oh, Silas! One word passed without art has chilled thee so?
And bereft of her future, our shaken Carole turned to leave.
Only alone, later in his poor ivory tower of hot wind and pride
Would he see his error and allow himself to grieve.

Carole, the second beauty born of Marble Falls,
Would later, at last, marry fairly well, if not too grand.
Silas, alone, tended to his vanity and found old age,
But twas Carole to first find her final rest at Death’s hand.

Silas, hearing of Carole’s passing, fell slow to his knees
And swore a prideless oath to take every Christmas Day,
In honor of Carole, his cast-off joy, a last birthday gift:
A simple arrangement in a pristine blue daisy bouquet.

The light faded over the hill after the star found its new home.
The old man had placed his bouquet when his heart beat its last.
The fog blanketed the granite and the bouquet and the sad.
Is loneliness the grand prize for a wrong word lost to the past?

Not all Christmases are all tinsel and cheer—
Silas and Carole speak to us in more mature themes.
Please, this Yule, find it inside you to forgive and forget
Or woe may scuttle your fonder, finer, future dreams.

[Shikoba]