Ghazals by Steffen Horstmann

[Rain laces shadows a finch thrashes through]

Steffen Horstmann
Rain laces shadows a finch thrashes through,
In grasses the knifing wind slashes through.

At Pompeii sparks teem in a thunderhead
The lightning's jagged edge slashes through.

Meteors puncture expanses of stardust
The pulsing light of Matar flashes through.

The minotaur's roars echo in a labyrinth
Gales shoot flaming embers & ashes through.

Circe whispers from seashells as krill glisten
In a cloud of kelp a steelhead thrashes through.

Diamonds adorn a king's shroud in a crypt
The raider's sledgehammer smashes through.

In a Gobi mirage silver light swirls
In the puddle a raindrop splashes through.

Stallions are shadows glimpsed in a haze
Of sand the wind's whip lashes through.

Light flutters in the chrysalis
A monarch thrashes through.

Variation on a Theme by Dylan Thomas

A razed city's ruins jackals will scour.
The cluster of stars a black hole will devour.

A Buddha's statue smashed with sledgehammers,
Its head in the rubble of a fallen tower.

But you speak of sprigs risen in cool ash
With the force of the green fuse that drives the flower.

But you recount winged-seeds cast
By winds fueled with a turbine's power.

Celestial debris laced with shards
Of planets thrashed in a meteor shower.

Nights turbulent with wraiths
Screeching in a wind-wrecked bower.

But you note how kernels of grain can germinate in dust
With the force of the green fuse that drives the flower.

But you speak of how suns combust 
To assert light & light's power.

from The Diva of Jalsaghar

Ecstatic visions flourished
In the mind of Begum Akhtar.

–Ancient candelabras lighting
Ancestral keeps in Salasar.

–The Celestial Dragon floating
Above citadels in Barakar.

–Holy chalices incandescent
In royal crypts at Calabar.

–Jewels melting in a crucible,
The pulsing opals of Kaspar.

–The gentians aflame in blue light.
The auras of Temple trees in Shadar.

–Clouds of arrows rising from galleons.
The flaming battlements of Jaccar.

The arabesques zephyrs sketch
In the silver sands of Kantar.

A ballerina's winged shadow leaping
Through marble arcades in Sahar.

The aurora like a fluid kaleidoscope
Washing over palisades in Makar.

Lightning sheening rain that spins upward
Through tornadoes in Shanar.