Yesterday, Olutomi Akinsanya at Wordcipher suggested we pull a poem out of the exchange we had a few weeks ago inspired by my short poem Treeline. You can see the conversation in the comments. I had a go at it yesterday but we lost internet (again) for the rest of the day, so I’m posting it now. If I could choose an image for this collaborative poem/meandering it would be Kerfe’s painting to illustrate her poem Inside of the out both words and colours seem to me to fit perfectly. Thanks, Kerfe for the loan 🙂

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Here a mountain rises,

a woman draped in robes of flowing green

above a valley carved by giants at play,

and boulders tossed in some wild game.

Did they carve their runic names in coombs and craters,

wield hammer and water, riveting sea

to land with glittering fjords?

Here a sandline, spiked with desert-parched rocks,

runs doggedly miles, merging seamlessly with the sky

in rainbow strata, bright as the spread wings of bird-myth.

Wings spread and water pours, endless waterfalls,

emptying mountainous giant bellies,

spouting river cords, binding sea, land, mountain, desert

and the creatures of myth, mountain and sky.

All with roots delve deep in the ocean,

where sea caves echo with the clamour of stories,

the builders of the earth’s foundations,

digging, carving, shaping sea images,

purple as mussel shells glowing with pearl light,

echoing with the sad song of doomed whales,

then rising on monstrous tides,

soaring on phoenix wings above rainbow cliffs

and the still, craggy face of the mountain woman and her flowing

waterfall of greenery—nature, calm and chaos,

weaving the dolphin-leaping stories of earthlines.



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.

11 thoughts on “Earthlines”

  1. Brilliant job Jane, I must say, especially because the title was perfect. It looked like a joke but many times we make artistic comments and lose them because we don’t realise how beautiful they actually are. We should do this more often you know. I should do a repost and thanks for doing this.

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