Beloved

I look into his face
So well loved I can trace every line
Every scar
And know the time that caused it
Know every tiny detail
The familiarity
A daily blessing
For despite the dread-full past
He still lives
And knowing what I know of him
The more beloved he is
Age and time ….our life
A strange unexpected dream
To be here now….
To be his wife

He sees me smiling
Knows my thinking
Remembering another Wedding Day
I was reluctant then to say
The words that bound me to him
He pauses, looks down
Collecting his emotions
Then turns, faces me
With a look of such intensity
Remembering his promises
He’s kept them
Every one

I look into his face
And see the sun.

For Claire and Jamie
MargaretArlen ©️
Photo courtesy of STARZ

Never My Love

I wonder if I will ever be done with Season 5…..

SO MANY LAYERS TO THIS POWERFUL FINALE….
I see more, feel more, hurt more with each viewing, but there is beauty within the terrible….and terrible beauty.

NEVER MY LOVE….Plays on endless repeat, as I watch again and again.

So many evocative, traumatic, fierce, passionate, murderous, human, loving moments….the deep connection of family, whoever they may be.

“There’s been an attack on the ridge”, Jamie says.
“They’ve taken Claire. We’re gonna get her back.”

He’s cold and methodical, preparing himself for war. Dressed in Tartan, he leaves the homestead as clouds of black birds fly from their night roosts, filling the skies with their cries. Tears leak,and chills creep up and down my spine as he runs to the highest point on the ridge, to light the fiery cross.
The young men and the old gather….to go to war for him, for their Healer, Mistress Claire.

All is cruel brutality, as she and we escape to a refuge far away, where Jamie wraps her in his Tartan Plaid, says those very familiar words….
“Y’re shakin so hard it’s making my teeth rattle.”
Never My Love a soothing respite in the background.

His shocked face, seeing her….bound, gagged, brutally beaten.
But he knows….he of all people knows how this feels…..he can’t break down, instead he cuts her ties, holds her by the shoulders, tells her
“You are whole…..you are alive.”
Then with the greatest care, he wraps her gently in his plaid, lifts her up, carries her….and those powerful words echo in my mind…..

“A Bloodsoaked Adam, A Battered Eve.” DG

I cannot let go of this season, this episode…..So loving in its final moments,
So deeply steeped in the strength of Family…..Who would not wish for the Warriors of Old. For their Strength and Courage in Battle.
For their Honour, their Loyalty.

I long, I yearn, I grieve for Men like these.

MA©️

Cigar and Whisky Magazine

He sat there, an expression of fierce intensity on his beautiful face….
Waiting, waiting for an answer, as cigar smoke filled the air.
Surrounded by the scent of finest Whisky and Leather….he waited,
YES,” I said…..Whatever the question, the answer is “YES.”

MA©️

Never Give Up

Rejected 7 times auditioning for Game of Thrones, he was meant for better things…..but his ability to accept rejection over and over again, says so much about this man, SAM.

Courage, stubbornness, an innate faith in his own ability, and a solid background of hard work instilled in him by his creative Mother.
You’re an inspiration Mr Heughan.

🧡🧡🧡🧡🧡🧡🧡

MA©️

Wedding Night

Surrendering himself to his new bride’s touch
He stands, his entire body yearning
Almost melting into her
But giving in, allowing
As she slowly explores
His strong, beautiful young body…..

And she…..glides slender fingers
Across his skin, so slowly
Delaying, extending her pleasure
And his….
Until she turns, faces him
Looks down, then up into his face
His slanted dark blue eyes
Her wanting matching his
Sees him quivering with desire

She loosens the ties of her shift
And he moves quickly
Wraps strong arms around and lifts
Carries her willing
To their marriage bed
Enters her then, pleasures her
Until their voices cry out together
On that night when first they wed.

MargaretArlen ©️

The Wedding

He stood before me
At the old church door
A vision of such splendour
I forgot every promise I’d made before
This moment

Strength, beauty, kindness, grace
All made clear
On his beautiful face
In this moment….I forgot my fear
My misgivings
The husband I’d left only weeks before
I forgot my past life
Walked up to the door
And as he took my arm
As he led me inside
All I wanted in this moment
Was to be his bride

The cuts were deep
The blood flowed free
The ties that bound us
Soaked and bloody
I looked up into his clear blue eyes
Down at the linen binding ties
And cared not for what may come
Or what was left behind
In this moment
I am his
He is mine

In this moment
Before the Altar
Of the new Gods and the Auld
I surrendered the past
Knew In my soul I was bound to him
This would be my last
My one, my only love
My kin

In this moment
In this Sacred place
In the eyes looking back at me
In his beautiful face

Mine, His
There is only this
Unexpected
Unwanted
Unwilling
Back then
Yet, here, opening up to him
There is only this
This Holy tie that binds
As the Priest intones
You my kiss your bride
In this moment

I give myself to you now
As bloods drips from the ties
That bind our vow
He is my husband
I his wife
Bound body and soul
Bound for life

Nothing exists
Between us now
But this
This
Endless
Moment

This first kiss.

MA©️

Eternal Lovers

In This Moment

Denial
Recognition
Heat
Her thoughts of a frantic husband
His memory of the warmth of her body
On that long, long ride
On that dark, wet night
Forced back into some strange normality
They are separate, yet linked
The bindings of twin souls
He knows it, and so does she
They are children of the stars
From now, for all Eternity

MA©️

Spring 2020

ROGER and JAMIE

ROGER AND JAMIE……

I FELL IN LOVE WITH JAMES FRASER through Claire’s eyes; as the main narrator she describes him in such fine detail, I know the essence of the man….through Diana’s descriptive prose and my very keen sense of smell, I too could pick him out of a crowded room of men, simply by his smell……a mixture of coffee, whisky, gunpowder, horses and manure, his sweat…..the deep male smell of him. His long graceful bones, the way his mane of copper russet bronze and auburn hair, lifts in stray wisps about his face, because he is either fiercely animated, or like a lions mane, falling around his shoulders in the frenzied passion of love making.
The quirk of his mouth, his wry humour, courage, honour and accomplishments.
A unique talent for absorbing both people, learning and languages into his life.
A man of big passions, ferocious loyalties and all encompassing generosity.

I FELL IN LOVE WITH JAMIE through Claire’s eyes, until so deeply absorbed in the “more real than life” story, Claire fell away. I was Claire…..living, loving, breathing him in, waiting for him to return from battle, from hunting, from visits with neighbouring Cherokee or working alongside him, and healing him.

AND THEN I FELL IN LOVE AGAIN, through Roger’s eyes. Roger knows Jamie when he arrives at Frasers Ridge….Roger, the “dog with a bone” Historian, has been hearing Claire’s story, researching Jamie’s History…..Culloden, Ardsmuir, Helwater. He has already developed a relationship with Jamie, two hundred years before he meets him (Yes my mind gets tied in knots too)!!! Before Claire leaves Inverness for the second time, Roger finds her fast asleep in the Reverend Wakefield’s Study, clutching the Ardsmuir Prison Records to her breast, her heart….he has a deep affection for Claire, and says to her sleeping figure, and to the long dead Jamie, “I don’t know who you were mate”, he whispered to the unseen Scot, “but you must have been something, to deserve her.”

And then there follows the catastrophic mess, through Lizzie’s mistaking Roger for the monster who has violated Brianna…..we know what follows, and once the two men have come to terms with each other, something beautiful happens.

ROGER AS NARRATOR won me over in a completely new way. He sees Jamie from a very different perspective. There’s understandingly, in the beginning, lingering resentment, but that changes subtly to begin with, as the two men take the measure of each other. I’m often brought to unexpected tears, by Roger’s reference to Jamie as “the big Scot.”
Why should that make me cry??? I think it’s the knowledge of how much suffering that big body has gone through….and, for some reason those words are a trigger for tears.
Roger refers to Jamie’s “panther like grace”, he wants his approval, and can’t help the jealousy he experiences around Jamie. One vivid description is of Jamie standing back, eyeing Roger dispassionately, as though he were buying a bullock at the saleyards. This comes about when Roger asks him “Teach me to fight.” There’s some brilliantly witty dialogue that follows with Jamie telling Roger he had his first sword at five…..Roger had a toy train with a red engine at the same age. But Roger is equally stubborn, also a man of learning and finally a deal is made. He describes his first experience with “the art of the sword, with Jamie Fraser as his opponent, as like fighting a cloud.”
But Jamie develops a strong affection and respect for Roger, and during the Ritualised Ceremony of The Fiery Cross, when Jamie calls out to him, “Come stand by me, Roger Jeremiah, son of my house”, there is a fierce pride and a belonging, a love for his Warrior Father-in-Law.

There is too much to include here. Roger as Narrator, brings James Fraser to life, in vivid detail that naturally is completely different to Claire’s. A man’s observation that also at times is unemotionally clinical in his Historian’s viewpoint of Jamie.

I LOVED JAMIE FRASER EVEN MORE, viewing him through Roger’s descriptive narration.

MargaretArlen ©️. Wednesday Writings
Spring, Central Victoria, Australia 2019.

References from Diana Gabaldon
And thanks to the talented Vera Adxer for her fabulous Art.

PRESTONPANS

The Parting Kiss

“Fighting gives y’ a terrible cockstand,”
He’d once said when first we wed
And now, he clutches me against his young body
So full of all the things men feel
When going off to war

I open my mouth to his kiss
His tongue making love to me
Hear the small urgent sounds in his throat
Feel his need pressing hard against my belly
And in this moment, I could lift his kilt
Take him in….hold him, keep him safe
From every thing that would take him away from me

But he pulls apart, eyes filled with regret
Turns, and at the door, pauses
Bows deep, turns again
Walks through the door to join his men

And I stand, left bereft
Still feeling his need, his heat
Now hearing the sickening sounds of war
And pray “Dear God above, protect this man I love
For I am bound now, heart, soul and body
I love hm more than words can say

Bring him home to me
By the closing of this day.”

MA©️

First line from Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander

Never My Love

REVISITING MONSTERS AND HEROES …..

The Tunnel

Ashen faced, laboured breathing
I watched him helplessly
Beside his bed
Saw his vital signs
Receding
Felt him leaving me
watching him
Helpless, helplessly
And
Gathering all the strength I had
To offer up to him
My mind reached into his
Willing, willing him

”Come back my love, come back
Stay with me
For did you not say
You’d never leave me?
You would always be here by my side?
Don’t go my love, don’t give in”
Can barely bear to lay my trembling hands
Upon him
Afraid he’ll feel my fear
So near death, now
I hear the steady beating of dark wings
Nothing to heal him with now
And I the notorious White Lady
Useless now, as I stand stricken upon this earth
Feeling him….slowly…letting…..go
Losing my courage, I am losing everything
“Healer, heal thyself”
From some place far away these words come to me
And a tiny spark of hope and courage

“Jamie, my love, what can I do”?
Did I think the words from my mind
To his….or perhaps I simply whispered them
But he turned his gaze upon me
“Claire, I am so very cold….
Touch me.”
Then I knew what was needed
And tore my shift off hurriedly
Lay full length upon his ice cold flesh
Reached, reached down to find his heat
Held him then, felt the faintest pulse
Slowly beating
Held him, moved with him
My hand, his heart
The pulse between us slowly beating
My body melting into his
One flesh
No longer he, nor me
One flesh, one huge heart’s pulse
Beating, beating
His body heat returning
That distant inward look receding

He’s turned back from the stars
That refuge he was seeking
Beneath my body’s heat
His great heart beats a steady rhythm
Eyes return my gaze
I kiss his pale beloved face
And death drifts through the open door
Leaving us alone once more
“Not this time you bastard !!!
He’s still mine, dear God
Still mine.”
And as he succumbs to healing sleep,
Arms still wrapped around him,
I can finally let go….and weep.”

For Claire and Jamie

MargaretArlen ©️
Spring, Central Victoria, Australia 2020