Naked Body of Dreams

Poetry by David Deyo


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Tea Among the Stones

Dusk settles in the subtle shades of gray
made when night and autumn fall together.
And so the sleepy umbra of Oakland's walls
creeps lazily across the thin, unfenced lawns
deeded to the landholders of this village.

Dogwood leaves turn brown, dropping in turns
to blanket the graves with brittle bedsheets.
Yet this is not death, this is retirement;
quiet in a skeletal neighborhood where time
delivers its pension of decay like mail.

Still, this is not rest to some,
to spirits dispossessed of death-dreams,
who boldly step out of their tombs
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.

Striking in pressed shirt and black tails,
a young, lion-maned scoundrel leaps down
from the wall, weary of vigil and restraint.
Under his feet crackle dry, lifeless twigs,
a betrayal of mortal steps on immortal soil.

He crouches for a moment, peering across
this squat, humble landscape of memorials,
sinews taut with Eros like a troubled rigor.
Somewhere along these cemetery streets
he pursues a tryst with a newfound lover.

Still, this is not strange to some,
to flesh and blood who take desire's dare,
who gladly prowl these marble mansions
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.

Cloaked in midnight lace and windblown veils,
a mournful mistress with china-faint skin
brushes earthstar from her smoky skirts.
Risen in a musty boudoir of magnolia and mint,
she readies herself for a night's rendezvous.

She groans a deadly, faintly-passioned moan,
stirred by a wisp of heat in the October wind.
For among the shifting shadows of cold which
fall across her face like darkness on the eye,
she feels a hint of swirling, living blood.

Still, this is not enough to some,
to ashes in the hunt of burning flame,
who only live in the constant craving
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.

Face all flush with passion and its blush,
the scoundrel peers too deep into the night.
And as he overlooks the mistress in her stealth
she settles like soot on the nape of his neck,
her glassy nails biting into the naked flesh.

Startled, he turns, then grips her bony wrists,
wrestling down to the yielding, evening earth.
But she casts him off, leading a lover's chase
to cover 'neath a gazebo, wrought in iron crust,
where a tarnished urn turned samovar awaits.

Still, this is not yet a thrill to some,
to hunters with a hunger for seduction
once the hour at last has come
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.

From granite cups they drink a steamy fill,
some reverence she pays to an antebellum rite,
'til the scoundrel tires of this polite affair.
He presses close, soon against her on the bench,
stoking his intimacy to a full coital flame.

Brazenly he bends to outflank the heavy hems
and venture an eager hand beneath her skirt.
Yet, as his fingers ascend her patient leg,
the mistress arrests his so feverish stare,
taming him into a stagger-stepped trance.

Still, this is not quite a kill to some,
to cravers of the ancient binding spell
once the bargain has been struck
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.

Like an unstringed marionette, she raises him
to the tips of her bared, quivering longteeth,
a predator's sharp kiss to penetrate his skin.
The tides of her breath deepen with full measure
while she laps at the crimson, purling stream.

Through the passing hours his tissues grow cold,
his complexion soon as pallid as the rising moon.
But long before the dawn and its woes arrive,
he slakes his thirst between the waiting crypts,
receiving the mingled, eerie brew in her veins.

Still, this is not a bad deal to some,
to those who forever prowl the night mind
once the taste has been acquired
for tea among the stones...
and a little night life.


About the Poem

A very good friend of mine in Atlanta is a multimedia artist. One of her occasional ambitions is to collect photographers, costumers, makeup artists, and models for thematic photo sessions.I was invited to provide logistic support for one of these ventures. This particular shoot was staged in Oakland Cemetery, a historic landmark in Atlanta. The theme was vampires.

Several of the photos taken were of my friend, dressed in Stevie Nicks fashion, as a vampiress. A mutual friend appears in several photos with her. The group of pictures suggested a story to me. This poem is the telling of that story. Here is a video interpretation of this poem, read by David:

Tea Among the Stones

Publication

This poem is previously unpublished in print.

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