The clashes of passion and reason rein
In my penchant for light, as shadows spill
Over my deceitful heart—in such vein
Whence knowledge deserves little but disdain—
And as arrows of doubt my vigour drill,
Which clashes of passion and reason rain.
“Fight on, fight on, let every sinew strain
And every thought our slave!” The rivals shrill
Over my deceitful heart—in such vain
Ideal of peace they so boast and profane—
When neither ego nor ethos can still
The clashes of passion’s and reason’s reins.
“Fight on, fight on,” they cry, “to die is gain!”
Despite their battle hymn, they steal and kill
Over my deceitful heart in such vain.
O why, my soul, should you embrace their chains?
Fly me into the light, where no more will
The clashes of passion and reason reign
Over our deceitful heart in such vein.
Lillian, our host for this week’s dVerse Poetics: Rein ’em in!, supplied us with a homophonic prompt, “rain / rein / reign”, and encouraged us to apply as many of these choices as possible in one go, with an added caveat that the poem must carry a positive bent. As if that wasn’t enough, I have taken extra pains to incorporate all three homophones into the refrain of this villanelle, whereas the rhyme of the second refrain is also a set of homophones, “vein / vain”. (In such a dotty vein, I hope the endeavour isn’t in vain.) Granted, this is an unprecedented personal challenge that has stretched and strained my poetic muscle like never before.
Photo Courtesy: Battle of Lapiths and Centaurs, 1688, Luca Giordano