Dogday cicadas join in a tumultuous chorus as the summer blazes into the first days of August. Thankfully only the males of the species produce that ear splitting vibration that inspired the writer Xenophon to remark, "Blessed are the cicadas, for they have voiceless wives." The cicadas are much heard but not often seen despite their stature. Perched in their leafy boughs they are witness to the cycles and struggles of a secret world. The ebb and flow of dissonance accompanies the play of dark and light.
Here, like everywhere else, the world is a two-headed ogre. Each face is turned to the other, comedy and tragedy, bloody lips pressed in a sensuous open mouth kiss full of sharp teeth that bite and grind. Equally balanced, each would devour the other seeking the right of survival.
In this jungle of sweet blossoms and verdant branches death walks on eight legs. The dark disciples are shy secret creatures of many shapes, sizes and colours but all of one race. No beings of flesh and blood, this race, vilified and worshipped in song and story. Skinless warrior bodies, armour clad, house a heart a swim in haemolymph not blood. Arachne’s children are skilled in their art. Myriads of fabrics are spun with silken threads on nature’s looms. Sun prismed, moonlit ghost or bathed in morning dew danger wears beauty’s face.
The prey is at bay. The cicadas fill the air with a chorus of cacophony and chaos. Lace delicate, strong as steel the Judas threads show no mercy. The cicadas scream an earsplitting crescendo and then silence falls. The empty hush trembles in anticipation. Hungry mouths and sharp teeth are momentarily stilled as ogre eyes watch the panorama unfold. A quick embrace and a white shroud, a silken chalice holding all the world, beginning and end, intertwined. A toast then, in honour of the watchers… To the first kiss and the last kiss, one in the same.
The chorus begins again.