Purple dusks

A poem that wouldn’t let me sleep last night


Where have they gone, the purple dusks,

The golden days of honeyed balm?

How did time tick tock so fast?

Slipped through the fingers, the small radiant joys,

In a cascade of colours, flowing like silk,

Into the vast, blue ocean no dike can hold back,

That we skimmed on snow-white feet for want of wings.

The soft nights and mornings full of love,

And the birds that sang their ancient songs

Among the spring and summer roses,

Long gone, their memory echoing sweet,

A scattering of feathers, like fallen petals.

Shadows on the flesh now,

The touch of a small, sticky hand in mine,

Sleek, warm, undemanding fur

Of placid, ephemeral companions,

And the heart overflowing, the arms overflowing,

With the glorious burden of a tired child,

All swept away, dead leaves in the wind,

The old rocking horse that gallopy-gallopied you off to bed,

Lost now beyond the bend in the road.

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

14 thoughts on “Purple dusks”

  1. In these elegant and sonorous words, I find a world we have mostly lost, a childhood reverie rarely regained, maybe because the din of this modernity drowns it out, or we are too quick paced to recollect our former softness? The colors you use here, paint the palate of rememberance, and the use of words not commonly employed gird the stays and cause it to speak for itself. I loved the use of ‘dike’ as I do not think I have ever seen that word used correctly! But aside that, the drift of this, I felt like I was reading a book of pollen in a high field of wild grass and poppies, watching purple clouds overhead. If you can transport a reader thus, you have succeeded in channeling your words.

    1. Reading a book of pollen in a high field—those are the kind of words I love; the mixing of the senses and the possibles. Thank you for liking this poem. I wouldn’t leave me along last night and I remembered most of the lines when I woke this morning. Sometimes the brain seems to have a special way of functioning at dusk, or half-sleep, like having your eyes half closed or listening underwater.

      1. For you and your migraine chronicles most certainly, I’m sure you have a bit of the fae in you, which most Irish do. It is exquisite and no wonder if it came from the dreamlands.

      2. We all have some of the wonder of the ancient people’s in our blood. Most of us don’t find it wonderful enough, that’s all. Bling bling bling bling!

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