|A sliver of moonlight
A blade in my hand
The Chosen of Koned
Together we stand
Wild dogs in the shadows
O gods do they howl
My sister before me
A wreath on her brow
Her brow . . . a wreath on her brow
harvest was meager
Dear Mother and Father
The sacrifice given
W/68 - NYC & Charles River Park
|I've always been intrigued
by apocalyptic fiction and have enjoyed many science fiction novels and
films about the collapse of our technological civilization and the subsequent
state of society. Long before Planet of the Apes and The Road
Warrior I had written several songs on this theme, of which Autumnal
Equinox is a poignant example.
The narrator and tragic protagonist of this story is the high priest of a tribe named the Chaga (possibly relatives of mine from the Chicago area, circa 2500 AD). This agrarian people has been hit hard by severe crop failure and are preparing to migrate south along the mighty river to the ancient city of Noleens. In order to curry favor with their principal deity Koned (his name is possibly a corruption of "Consolidated Edison") they are about to perform a human sacrifice upon the only suitable virgin among them, the younger sister of our hapless narrator.
He addresses his plaint to his (and her) parents, who have raised both of their children to be pious, Koned-fearing citizens of the tribe, who trustingly refer to themselves as the "Chosen of Koned."
I think the seed for this tale was with me for a long time before it found voice in song. At age eight or nine I read the story of the sacrifice of Iphigenia at the hand of her father Agamemnon, in order to propitiate the goddes Artemis on the eve of his fleet's sailing for Troy (and you all remember how that turned out).
It's an old story, and one that has particular resonance in today's world of renewed religiosity.