Darkness closes its fist
over the season, November rain
clamps down the sky, the day
awash in night’s wreckage.
Summer’s cumulus gone, clouds
prick my bones with steely fingers,
a flute straining for music.
One by one, the great voices
from the wheel of light,
setting the mind’s borealis aflame.
When shadows are hip deep,
do we keep walking? Or learn
to swim, eyeless in the depths?
If we befriend grief, will it leave
a bread crumb trail out of the forest?
How will we sing when we can only
cry? O voices of the holy word,
the holy song, strike flint in my marrow,
lend your breath to a starving flame,
warm away the moisture
that creeps beneath the skin.
Teach us again the shattered Hallelujah,
that we may fling its broken body
in the face of remorseless gods
and starless nights.
©2016 Sean Arthur Joyce
 David Bowie, musician, actor, artist, 1947–2016.
 Leonard Cohen, poet, musician, 1934–2016.
 Keith Emerson, keyboard player/composer for Emerson, Lake & Palmer, 1944–2016.
 Chris Squire, bass player & founding member of the band Yes, 1948–2015.