The moon, an honoured wedding guest,
came down to the end of the village street,
huge, warm and yellow, roosting among
the storks’ abandoned chimneytop nests
on the low-pitched roofs of plastered cots,
the gallopers on the starry path
showering sparks from their silver hooves.
In the morning, we trooped down to the field,
a black cat, startled, crossing our path,
led by Zoltan the shaman with staff and drum:
broke bread, drank wine, in a circle of friends
as horses grazing on the mead
casually wandered across to look,
amiably nuzzling – and broke the ring.
Back in the capital that night,
in a water castle in a lake,
the Gypsy fiddlers struck up the dance
under the arches of ringing stone,
as I did the rounds of the bridal feast,
cold, culture-shocked and paranoid,
wondering what it was going to cost.
At the midnight cusp of the equinox,
we stood candle in hand by the cloister well,
celebrating the union
of man and woman, like night and day,
dark and light, in harmony:
Diana already curled in your womb,
a little New Year’s gift to the world.