The Dark Daughters of Babylon

In the Temples of Inanna,
In the groves of Babylon
Women whose midnight
Secrets tumble in the harvest,
Their offerings to bring
To altars and to daughters,
Sing how their desert hearts
Leap like fishes through their 
Dark and mysterious arts. 
What have they to tell,
The dark daughters of Babylon?
What secrets do their 
Sullen smiles conceal? 
What trinkets of antiquity
Are held by their long thin hands
Shaded from sunlight by the
Solar circles of temple wedding bands?
What songs do they sing,
Plucking at Inanna's kithara
Their voices crying with a rising call, 
Then melting into daylight 
When Olive Mountain Priestesses
Set up the golden rain to fall?

What have they to reveal,
The dark daughters of Babylon,
Whose skin is made of
Moonbeams and whose lustful
Breasts heave to belong
To hearts made out of flame
And souls fashioned from lace
And bodies made to last the span
Of a sacred and lengthy inhumane race?
What morsels made from
Stone and mortar are nestled
Beneath circlets of satin and
Balanced on their toes?
Does their bad knowledge
Wane in the summer rains
Or tortoise-torturously slowly 
Grow and grow and grow?

Have you seen them dance,
The dark daughters of Babylon?
They move with fire and brimstone,
They sway with deep desires.
They hide not beneath the cape:
They buck and twist with the lyre's
Ringing tones and the hoot of the
Hallowed hollowed horn.
Their scarves are transparent -
The opaque modesty of the City's
Wedding Hall becomes them not.
These are the daughter's of the
Threshing room floor.
These are the daughters of the
Shining golden whore!

Have you seen them feed,
The dark daughters of Babylon?
They suck the marrow from the bone, 
And grind the oil from the seed, 
They reject the green weeds that satisfy
The bitter tastes of their sisters to the North; 
They let the juice drip down their faces 
When the fruit bursts from the fields.
They yield to their gluttonous desires. 
They throw the sacrificed meat 
Upon the temple's holy fires
Then they eat and eat and eat!

My hands are tanned and my neck is burnt, 
I have to pay for all I've learnt. 
I hold the past in my mother's arms.
I shield the future from present harm. 
The daughters of Babylon once called to me
I refused them after a short dance -
Me and them...
Them and me...
Round and round the apple tree.
Then I hacked off all my hair,
And bathed in some dying sea.
I separated the wheat from the fruit
And fed my hunger from the 
Gifts of David's Royal palm trees.
The Babylonian life is not for me!

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