I walked through the fields of rye,
down by the river where the willows and the clouds
move and are still in the flowing waters – move and are still.
I think you know the place I mean.
And there I first heard my lover’s voice
as he strolled through the daylight as if he owned it.
You know, the land is very flat on RezIsimgria,
and the fields are wide.
And there, by the river, I first heard my lover’s voice,
singing under the empty skies
which burn above the fields of rye.

Rye, rye – the fields of rye.

He saw me and he came over to me – to me! –
who have nothing, and am no one.
He smiled as he spoke to me, there by the river’s side
where the willows and the clouds and the watermint
gather the sunlight when it is day, and when it is night
gather the moonlight.
I think you know the place I mean.
And I, a foolish one, smiled back at him, and he took my smile
as if he owned it.
I lost my smile to him on that first day
as I walked with him under the empty skies
which burn above the fields of rye.

Rye, rye – the fields of rye.

On that first day I lost my smile,
when first I heard my lover speak
on the lonely path through the fields
in summer, when the rye was tall.
And I was frightened there may be no other days
when I would hear him speak or sing.
But he said, if I would kiss him there, upon his lips –
I think you know the place I mean –
then he would meet me another day,
there where the river moves and is still,
and we would kiss again beneath the empty skies
which burnish the fields of rye

Rye, rye – the fields of rye.

On that first day, I lost my smile,
and my first kiss, too, he took
as if he owned it.
It was late summer, and the rye was tall
and hid us like a golden wall where we lay down
among the old willows, on the field’s edge.
He said if I would give him my soul
there upon the hardened soil –
I think you know the place I mean –
then he would meet with me on other days
and he would be the empty skies
and I would be the fields of rye.

Rye, rye – the fields of rye

On that first day, I lost my smile;
I lost my kiss, and my soul, too.
I don’t regret it, none of this: smile, kiss and soul were his,
he owned them, I only gave them back to him.
And when he sang as he walked away,
leaving me beside the river, and the river changed,
though the river was still –
I think you know the place I mean –
I knew there would be no other days
when we would meet, and that my soul
was lost on a smile and on a kiss, forever,
because I was his.
Now I am alone, but not alone, and I
am left tearless among the fields of rye

Rye, rye – the fields of rye

And autumn came, he did not return.
He was a grey-eyed one, and they do not return.
And autumn came, and the scythes began to make a fall
of the golden walls of the fields of rye.
Still I walked there, where the river bends away,
like a sickle moon, westwards towards SanShoNar –
perhaps you know the place I mean? –
under the willows where the earth was burnt
to make ready for the cruel plough
under the empty, endless skies
where I lay down among the fields of rye.

Rye, rye – the fields of rye
I lie down among the rye

*     *     *     *     *

N  O  T  E  S

RezIsimgria | The LateAncient term (see Language) for the vast plains to the east and north of the Land of O (see Geography | and Maps). “Rez” = plains; “Isimgria” = without limit, or without end. In the modern tongue, the region of RezIsimgria is known as “the Endless Plains”

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