Pouring out of the city beneath the Rising Sun Clock, the crowds jostled and weaved, thronging the well-trodden paths to distant meetings and markets. The colours of their bodies leaked into the sky to mingle with the clouds and slowly darkened the day with a heavy hue, until the Sun Clock faded and they trod wearily home, colourless once more.
Riding mostly in the dark corners of ocean-going cargo ships, they escaped their home port of DUST, and travelled across the globe. Living by their wits, the two friends imagined themselves to be royal princes on a legendary adventure – even as they carefully cleaned the fleas and filth from their hair.
They painted their bodies with skill and care, killed only for food or justice, loved the earth and family with passion, worked under the sun and stars, and their feet connected them fully to the ground that gave them life.
The Shaman stood guard for three days and nights as the newlywed Royals – bedecked in all the finery their elevated status demanded – accepted his silent blessing and stern entreaties to the Gods, all the while clasping each others hands in secret passion beneath the heavy patterned robes.
For weeks he scanned the horizon with dark eyes. His intensity froze him to stone in the barren desert, and his kinsfolk could not move him. Just as night fell on the sixteenth day, small shapes danced on the distant dunes, twirling and leaping ever nearer in a frenzy of joy and longing. His call had been answered – his vigil was ended. Now he could sleep.
The sand so deep The land so wide The stillness on which echoes glide The land so wide The sand so deep The burning blue; so vast; so steep And only truth remains in stone – An age of glass, an age of bone An age of ruin, an age of glory – And every face tells a story… Underneath the million skies Only bodies burn and die, While spirit, magic, myth live on Silent voice to those now gone
And we who walked the sand The time before the time before, Are pleased to be all rock and dust Blown on the wind, and so; no more
In the deepest night At the coldest hour In the trembling stars The Sun God’s Flower Travels safe Within the womb – the Heaven River Goddess Tomb – And Shu holds Geb Upon the sand While Nut uplifts In Tufnet’s hand And sleeping Ra Wakes to rebirth One single star Falls to the earth