Queen Moo's Talisman; the Fall of the Maya Empire/II

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4094806Queen Moo's Talisman; the Fall of the Maya EmpireQueen Móo's Talisman—II.Alice Dixon Le Plongeon


The daughter of the Can was early wooed
By Aac, her brother, who with fervor sued;
A brother-prince by law must consort be;
In choice of one the future Queen was free.
And 'twas for Coh alone her own heart yearned;
Aac seeing this with jealous anger burned.
Those brothers fought as strangers cruel might;
Both wounded fell, a rueful, horrid sight!

Coh far and wide for valiant deeds was known;
The Princess Móo her courage oft had shown;
That they should mated be was right and just;
Thus by the Can, who in them put full trust,
Their nuptials sanctioned were, and many a day,
On pleasure bent, the people had their way;
For Can regaled them all with lavish grant.
At break of day was heard the deep-toned chant:

Lord of day we are Thine!
On our path deign to shine—
Holy Light!
Mortals glory in Thy might.
When night flees before Thy ray
We our voices lift, and pray—
Great Light!

Scarce rose the sun when crowds on sport intent,
From every door in quest of pleasure went;
All left their homes the time to pass away,
And on the air rang many a joyous lay
Of boy and girl who simple frolic sought,
And gaily sang with little care or thought.

Hear life's jingle, come along!
All should mingle with the throng;
Clasp my hand, dear, haste with me—
Say not nay, for I love thee!
Quit thy nonsense or begone!
I am not thus lightly won.
Let's go onward to the dance,
Give me but one tender glance!
Cease thy teasing, I 'll not go!
'Tis decided, thou must know.
Hear life's jingle! join the throng;
Youth and pleasure stay not long.

With shades of eve came other dancers gay,
Their smiles enticing young and old away;
As in and out about the streets they roamed,
They joked and sang while many a goblet foamed:

On our dress of spotless white
We are wreathing garlands bright;
And will sing, kiss, sip,
With laughing, ruddy, lip,
Far away into the night.

Days of gladness soon take flight,
Love's sweet nectar do not slight
Let us sing, kiss, sip,
And light-hearted gaily trip,
While our vows we once more plight.

And well they did to quaff the honeyed cup—
Why keep the mind with bitter thoughts filled up,—
The watchful gods no pity ever take
On those who sullen gloom will not forsake;
But on bright smiles, reflecting cheerful heart,
Frown not, e'en if gay Folly play a part.

O beauteous night! when lingering footfall strayed,
And stars reflected seemed where firefly played,
Each leaflet murmured lover's tenderness;
Soul's ecstasy was pure and fathomless.
O mystic Love! to every trivial thing
A new and holy charm dost ever bring,
With light and joy, to all touched by thy ray
Creation glows for him who feels thy sway.
Of one we love Perfection is the name,
For love is breath of God, all potent flame!
Thus 'twas a lover sang, with rapture filled,
When bird on leafy bough had softly trilled:

Ah! bird so gay,
Take not thy flight!
With dulcet lay
My heart delight!
Stay by me here,
For thou art dear—
Tho' one I love is yet more dear!

Ah! floweret fair,
With breath of Morn
Upon the air
Thy perfume's borne;
Thy life's too fleet,
For thou art sweet—
Tho' one I love is yet more sweet!

Ah! limpid dew,
Fair pearl of Night—
That doth anew
To petal bright
Give charm to lure—
Thou art so pure!
Tho' one I love is just as pure.

In drowsy bud Night breathed. "May love here bide!"
But love and pain are one, so floweret sighed
When glistening dew to perfumed petal clung,
Imploring—"Wake me not! by zephyr swung,
Ah! let me linger in this happy state!
Ope not the way to pang that may await."

But lovely Morn appeared with roseate ray,
And soon the god of day chased tears away;
Earth throbbed anew, leaves quivered with delight;
Flowers laughed, "We love! we live! thanks be to Night!"
In silent, sombre hour of deep repose
All form drinks in life's force that ever flows;
And from the tranquil vale of balmy rest
Each being leaps—love's joy they all attest.
On globes revolving night must follow day;
The universe doth this same law obey.

Pleasure with pain is mingled, gently kissed
By Sorrow, or regret for something missed;
As plaintive minor blends with major strain,
Fair Light's attendant shades adorn her train.
And Móo upon her marriage day had mourned,
For she by Oracle had been forewarned
That Coh from her might in the future time
Be torn by dastard treachery and crime.
Beyond that time the wiseman too could see
That Móo, bereft and harshly wronged, would flee.
More strange than all, the Oracle foretold—
"In bitter woe this thought may thee uphold:
Both will return; the sister thou wilt be
And wife once more of him awaiting thee."

The Prophet Cay taught Can's eldest child;
With mystic lore their time was much beguiled;
For pupil would some day the High Priest be,
When his preceptor should from earth go free.
Surrounded by his volumes old, the Sage
In search of truth read over every page.
On rare occasions he before the crowd
Came forth to speak, and all to his will bowed.
Prophetic words were his, sincere and wise;
The Can obeyed when Cay deigned advise.
Revered by high and low, the honored Sage
Could by his will much pain and grief assuage—
Nor ever aid withheld, for he loved all—
But soon the Lord of life would him recall.
More than he did no one in mortal frame
Could do, aspiring to the Holy Flame,
To keep soul free from earth. His nourishment—
Whereon the sun its vital ray had sent—
Pure water, simple fruit, white flesh of bird,
Was more than he required, he oft averred.
In mystic posture he besought Mehen,
The Word, that he might wisdom pure attain.
He could at will ascend from solid ground
And float above, while crowds up looked spellbound.
Soon after Sovereign Can, without a throe,
Cay passed away, bewailed by high and low.
Around his flaming pyre, bowed in the dust,
All wept for him in whom they'd put their trust.

Can's first-born son then filled the Pontiff's place;
Thenceforth he would by every means efface
The jealous hatred rankling in Aac's mind;
But he alas! with passion grew more blind;
For now that Móo was Queen, and consort Coh,
Her love he ne'er could win, nor him o'erthrow.
To Móo came other joys with baby lips;
Pure bliss from soft caressing finger tips.

Mausoleum of High Priest Cay, at Chicħen.