Chess Morality VIII: The Pleiades
'Tis not a game that plays at mates and mating; 'Tis not a game of barter, land and houses We have gone forth beyond your bonds and borders, 'Tis not of 'days and nights' unearthly fashion; There is the subtler music, the clear light We are not shut from all the thousand heavens... --Ezra Pound, 'The Flame' Chanting the square deific, out of the One advancing, out of the sides, Out of the old and new, out of the square entirely divine... --Walt Whitman, 'Chanting the Square Deific' Electra(F): We seven sisters of Artemis' train, Goddess of abstract games and all Nature-- Our constellation widens that domain Of Earthly reach, enshrining your stature, Just as the pole star aligns the wagon's hitch And wily Falcon wings unto its pitch. Merope(P): No Pawn in Orion's game, this starry Role shedding the mortal coil like a mirage-- Our temporal presence beholds sorry Souls degrading life -- our afterimage Dual-natured, doubled, second selves the same: My doppelganger roves wherefrom we came. Sterophe(N): Swift-winged Pegasus, the Archer's moon-hooved Steed, the very picture of a rover, Whose mountaintops and sacred groves soon proved A certain hideaway, refuge and cover, A ground neither to be sacked by the Goths Nor laid to rest under burial cloths. Maia(B): Bishop, Tower, Horse and Falcon arise Whole cloth from air and water, earth and fire, Chanting the One worthy to realize The end to which all reflections aspire: Four basic moves steeped in myth, deep as math Emerge from the square on the Chessic path. Taygete(K): No deus ex machina under 'vaults Of light' proves, of all things, Chess is the First Cause. Yet even Zeus hurling those thunderbolts Would grasp that, more and more prone to forced draws Is the longtime six-piece game; and wait for the start Of the Chess which reflects the state of the art. Alcyone(Q): The game as played in forests, dales and streams The checkered board deriving from the net, Queen Artemis conceived the Sport in dreams Each artifact essential to the set, The Falcon hiding out in pinnacles As augured by the cultic oracles. Calaeno(R): The septet's footsteps and the square deific, A combination riding on the knife- Edge of precision, and scientific As an abstracted recipe for life: Code four base-pairs becoiled and sublimate Cook slowly for a billion years and wait. George William Duke 2002
Written by George William Duke.
WWW page created: June 6, 2002.