lone mockingbird

perches on oak branch

holds his early service




benevolent din

spreads her arms

around hushed church



wind whirls

whips crusty leaves at

anxious autumn



cloaked in mystery

harmonies brush callused fists

rub tear stained cheeks

tongues of light

dance radiant lament

through stained-glass



sudden quiet—

has earth stopped turning

all trees frozen, seas dried up?



Dies Irae wafts over

undulating shoulders

stooped in wooden pews

choir incants

endless tangle of Latin

sounds anguish me—numb



rain begins weeping—

aeternam, aeternam, aeternam

sobbing, bleeding onto fresh-dug grave


*Inspired by Mozart Requiem- Catholic Mass for the Dead
Dies Irae- Day of Wrath, Aeternam- Eternal


by Marianne Lyon

Marianne has been a music teacher for 43 years. After teaching in Hong Kong, she returned to the Napa Valley and has been published in various literary magazines and reviews including Ravens Perch, TWJM Magazine, Earth Daughters and Indiana Voice Journal. She was nominated for the Pushcart prize in 2017. She is a member of the California Writers Club and an Adjunct Professor at Touro University in California.

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