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Andrea del Castagno, The Sybil of Cumae

Sieving memory kernels

Through the net of your heart,

Dear Distant One —

Will we quarrel over

the thorns of your crown?

Will it shine forth

through the blood let in vain?

Every drop of your reputation

spilled pricks my heart

with stars that darken The Sun;

the uncreated light

that shines from the pain

of your daily crucifixion

the distance, once daily ritual sacrifice,

is now my golden fleece;

I weave the crown

Of our eternity together

from the thorns of your crown,

my distant one, my heart,

my sage and warrior, scepter-bearer

of everything distant and loved

— my daily chores — I am the bee

of your eternity and guard that

every earthly crown of stars

bears the frozen droplets of blood

where the thorns of time and fashion

pricked your magnificent temple.

My heart and time are one

In your crown

My flock of black doves

on an unlikely sky – the Veronica –

heralding the future

of mighty cities and their glad Sybils

Guido Reni, Maria Magdalena

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