The Lion and The Lioness




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Once upon a time, deep in the wooded savannas of the Mitumba Mountains
There existed a lion
This big cat was never more contented than when lounging beneath his favoured Acacia tree
Gazing up at the stars of Orion
In ancient Greek mythology, Orion was a fearsome hunter
Which perhaps was why the lion fixated on this particular constellation with such amazement and wonder


Whenever distant thunder heralded its intent
He would head to the nearby river basin
This is where he replenished his reserves
Quenched from the streams with both fervour and keen
For here he was both seen and heard


Beneath the watchful stare of his guardian, the night raven
He was assured of untroubled hydration
Needed his strength as the lion’s intention was superintending a scheme of wild land reclamation
Had planned to empower the rise of a nation
Affectionately known as his pride


Thanks to the raven, there was no present danger of the craven abdication of his moral obligation
And often, all that he could do was sigh
For the lion was under no illusion as to the heat of fusion when attuned to the truth within its eyes
Should he be required to find seclusion
Then it was foregone conclusion that his movements would lead straight back to the rapture of the riverside enthusiastically


Gymnastically he’d stride with the tenacity and might of one emphatically defined by sun-flamed mane and moonshine eyes
Not however, on this most dramatic bitter night
For the hyenas, never known for kind demeanour had been meaner than he’d ever preconceived they’d dare to be
In evening shade, beneath Acacia tree and most disgracefully
They named and shamed the lion for what they deemed downright lazy
Blamed him for the state of parched terrain that he proclaimed would soon be nourished
Neither, as it transpired, were they known for their encouragement


The lion was no stranger to the dangers of the open range
Yet his gentle heart ached at the senseless pains inflicted by resentful thieves of Zen these unrelenting bleeders drained
Circumventing with intent to maim and kill the spirit of goodwill for which their quarry had been famed
Not the kind of big cat trained to abstain from height of skirmish
However, he had seldom been so unforeseen of whirling like a dervish


Hurtful words were a burden far worse than the slur of combative excursion
Each sharpened sneer was a harkened spear to his entire being
Every sense was heightened
Yet, the lion was enlightened to an ever verging frightful dearth of feeling
Never one to purge through mere entitlement alone
Selective of the stress he felt enticed into revealing
Precious few would see him reeling
Licking wounds by river side
Underneath attentive eye of raven


It was then, as his Zen was evidently in the most dire need of replenishment
That the lion spotted movement in the reeds of fevered sediment
Delicate the serenade as verdant green grass swerved and swayed
Indeed, the kind of masquerade which could have claimed great peril
With everything at stake, he waited patiently for confirmation
Suddenly, his feral instinct kicked in with elation


As the lioness caressed the reeds akin to breeze of Venus
Blood began to circulate the heart in sparse stagnation
It was clear within an instant hers was of an intravenous persuasion
Obscene as it had seemed, this was indeed the queen of fabled decoration
And, in all the years he had roamed these plains
The lion had never felt so untamed in veneration


She was a vision of unrestrained beauty beheld
Through the eye of a patron of faith whose tainted heart swelled to delight in the kindliness graced
By one of very timeliest placement
Standing adjacent the object of every affection
The lion prepared to unleash mighty roar
Clenched his paws and reclined to hind quarters
Would have fought tooth and claw to ensure her safe-keeping
Lessen the stress on the shoulders she bore
Yet, on this occasion it was he who felt wholly adored
Protected by the love of sweet reflection


The lion roared proudly
And, in his direction, the lioness echoed his bold tone profoundly
Much to the hyenas disgust
As they scattered akin to the ashes of winged bust
Likely, to prepare more vials of antitrust midst bluster, flap and flounder


Meanwhile, at the riverside
The lioness addressed the lion’s stride of very same dressed pride inclined
Caressed his weary eyes with gaze of incandescent shine
Ventured forth to cheer a smile once every bit as endless as the Nile
Raise it with her own and reassure this big cat most empathically that he would never be alone
Make it actual fact that he was actually home


As legend would have it, such synchronous roars became infinite habit thereafter
This braided remaster united in the guardianship of the seen
Never more contented than when lounging beneath their favoured Acacia tree
Gazing up at the stars of Orion
Parading Zen resembling the essence of Zion
The lion and the lioness
Left the most tremendous of impressions in their legendary wake
And every now and then, they would head to the nearby river basin to replenish their reserves
For beneath the sweet persuasion of the watchful eye of raven
They would evermore be seen and heard, adored
Two big cats and one emphatic






Richard Charles Stevens


Keeper of The Crimson Quill




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