Copyright 1989, Dale Ashman and S Hartwell

Dale writes:

Dear Dragonqueen, Iíve only managed to write one piece since you left. It links to your "Insanity Incorporated" cycle. Itís a bit of strange one called the "Spirit Of Albion" in four parts, each part reflecting a different mood. Part One concerns what is happening to us all; change can be for the better or for the worse, and if it leads to compromise and the dulling of senses, feelings and emotions then it should be resisted by all who value the very vitality of life. Part Two is about the emptiness I feel for what is missing from life. There is a huge gaping hole in my life and the Spirit of Albion personifies this - feelings have been lost and opportunities have been missed, and that is where the hole has come from. Part Three is despair at the thought that what is lost cannot be retrieved, but the final part is a realisation that "Albion is only sleeping". Nothing is lost forever, anything can be found again. It is a matter of time and waiting, if not in this life then in the next. Part One was written sometime on 18-8-89. The final parts were all written in a frenzy on 23-8-89.

Spirit of Albion
Copyright 1989, Dale Ashman

i) Dragonqueen

Dragonqueen it seems to me
That your life is turning out to be
One long compromise.
And the Kristal days of so much feeling
Were lost to you when the tears
Stopped falling from your eyes.
And even Aphrodite
With her slimmerís schemes and sallow skin
Seemed more alive to me.
But maybe its not for me to judge
How you should look, how you should think
If youíre happy with your mediocrity.

ii) Emptiness

But where is the Spirit of Albion?
Tell me has she flown away?
Tell me is there any point in going on,
Show me how to face another day.

"No my friend they nailed her high upon a cross
And tied her there with shackles of barbed wire."

I mourn for the Spirit of Albion;
Now where is the fire in our eyes?
Where are the bleeding hearts and the crazy days?
Where are the children of sky?

iii) The Spirit of Albion

Albion is dead!
I saw her die!
I saw them rip apart her body
And build their concrete jungles
Over her remains!
I saw them rape her children,
Her beautiful children, and rob them of their youth,
For refusing to compromise.
I saw them burn her garden
And turn it all to sand
A vast desert without a heart.

And then I heard them mourn,
"Where is Albion?"
Albion is dead!

iv) Awakening

I said that Albion is dead.
No! Albion is only sleeping,
As we too sleep and wait until the spring.
For Albion is part of us
And we are one with Albion,
In time we all shall see,
In time we all shall see.

Dragonqueen writes:
Dale, here is my answer to Albion and a little bit of hope!

Albion Revisited
Copyright 1989, S Hartwell 

i) Dusk

As life approaches the final golden chord
And memories run circles in your mind
Do not look back at what might have been
Leave all your negatives behind.

Look forward - thereís a new life
Just out of sight a new sun shines.
What choices will you make this time?

In the multicoloured tapestry you wove of life
Are missed stitches, unfulfilled dreams
Dropped notes in the melody you wrought
Of the raw stuff of existance, unredeemed.

Look forward - life continues
In its ever-circling way
And youíll be back some day.

Continuation, oneness, is the rule
Life circles round, whatís lost is found;
No opportunity is forever lost to you
In lifeís eternal ever-turning round.

Look forward - thereís a new life
Your feet will once more tread the lawn

Of earth; your eyes behold another dawn.
Albion sleeps. She has withdrawn herself
Into the cosmos whence she came.

Albion returns; she will renew herself
Still Albion but never quite the same.

ii) Dawn 

Albion awakes; her heart bursts budlike with the joy of life,
She blossoms forth, burgeons with vitality
To grasp again the life that bled from the sundered corpse
Of an older Albion weighed down with mediocrity
And shackled high upon her cross
By the constraints of society.

The charred husk they made of Albion, the desecrated heart
Torn asunder by those who could never hope to understand,
Blooms forever within all those who loved her.
Rekindled from its embers her flames are fanned
By those who care
And who walk this land.

Dragonqueen writes:
Dale, I was thinking about you when I wrote the following; about your mix of passion and depression, about lust and death. Enjoy!


Part 1: Choices

Who knows where I shall find my peace
Elysian fields, Nirvanaís glades
Or the infernal depths of Hades?

In the fabled glass Isle of Avalon,
Amongst the brothels of sweet Babylon,
The joys and debaucheries of ancient Sodom
And Gomorrah? Or in some modern

Approximation of hellís inferno,
Searching vainly for gold in Eldorado,
Waiting for ruin in biblical Meggido?

Who wants peace and eternal ennui
When they can have debauchery?
Who wants the tranquil honest rest
Ambrosia, nectar, honeyed death,
When they can lie on the gilded breast
And taste the musk of the whoreís sweet breath?

 Part 2: The Queen of Whores 

Ebon hair cascades in tangles
To writhe like snakes across her breast,
Bells on ears, and wrists, and ankles,
And coloured scarves swirl from her dress
As though she were wreathed in smoky rainbows
Beneath her lustrous obsidian tresses.

Her eyes, like agate, promise healing,
Glittering from her cream pale flesh,
Lips like ruby, moist, appealing,
Hungering for a manís caress.
A body, delicate and slender,
Its waist pinched in by a crimson sash.

Sweet as honey, hideous beauty,
A fly in amber - youíre trapped and held,
As you regard fair deathís dark bounty,
Coloured silks around her swirl -
Russet, turquoise, chrome and lilac,
The livery of her underworld.

The scent of roses pervades her clothing,
But roses that are overblown,
The cloying attar of death and loathing,
Of deathís sweet queen atop her throne,
Her smoky silks drift-dance about her,
Her sickly scent among them flows.

Part 3: Let Us Prey

The call to prayer the faithful wakes,
And sets them on their knees,
There to pray for mankind's sake
While the faithless themselves please.
They pray in vain for a way grown stale
And in its grave grown cold,
Upon old prayers its heart impaled,
Its fine hopes ill and old.

They pray for salvation for the wronged
From their temples wrought of stone,
While in the streets the beggars throng
And orphaned children groan.
They prey for all the children's souls,
Others prey on children's flesh,
For obscene delights and pleasures foul
As their victims pray for death.

The call to prayer the faithful wakes
And fills the temple coffers,
It marks the time as a woman waits
For some degrading offer.
The pious pray their souls to save,
Raise them up to paradise;
The beggars pray for a pain-free grave;
The psychopaths prey on lives.

Part 4: Epilogue

Thereís no more gold in Eldorado,
The sinís run dry in Sodom,
And mythical biblical Megiddo
Long ago met Armageddon.

Someone doused the great inferno,
Someone shattered Avalon,
Deathís gone whoring in the brothels
Of sweet sinful Babylon.


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