When all the colours of the world are grey

Another villanelle for the dverse prompt. I chose this painting by Yumeji Takehisa because the ambiguity seems to fit the sense of the poem. To me the hand is a barrier between the two, saying ‘That’s enough! No further.’

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When all the colours of the world are grey,

And stars fall thick as ash in deepest night,

Between us there is nothing more to say.

 

The moon has set, I could not make her stay,

She would not see my silver tears of slight,

When all the colours of the world are grey.

 

In silence of the dark, I hoped that day

Would dawn, at least, with rainbow-coloured sight,

Between us there is nothing more to say.

 

November, chill and drear, it seems, not May,

This cascade, cold and cheerless, of pale light

When all the colours of the world are grey.

 

So long ago, it seems, spring flew away,

With swallow’s dart, wild goose’s steady flight,

Between us there is nothing more to say.

 

When boundless joy plunges into dismay,

Handfuls of dust, what once was pure delight,

Our shining world is empty, dull and grey,

No love between us, nothing more to say

Those first times that we’d meet

This villanelle is for the dverse prompt.

Julian_Falat_0033

Light is harsh and hard in this dull heat,

The moon a pale reflection of the sun,

Reminds me of those first times that we’d meet.

 

Air so still I hear the slow wing beat

Of buzzards, drawn by sound of hunter’s gun,

Light is harsh and hard in this dull heat.

 

Afternoons, café terrace replete,

We’d saunter home already half-undone,

Reminds me of those first times that we’d meet.

 

Summer fruit is never half so sweet,

As those we tasted, our love just begun,

Light is harsh and hard in this dull heat.

 

Looking back, a cynic, I’d delete

Your promises, just so much hollow fun—

Reminds me of those first times that we’d meet.

 

Wiser now, I fly on nimble feet,

Mellow dusk’s hues bathe me as I run,

Away from all the pain of this dull heat,

That recalls those first times that we’d meet.

A good name

For the dverse prompt—my sign, my name, my house.

Tambarlan

Not all place names go back to the Romans, or the Celts with their spirits of place. History is a stream, un long fleuve tranquille, it delves banks and builds ramparts, and it drops names here and there wherever someone needs one. A place name by the roadside stands proudly, arbitrary spelling because farmers didn’t go to school much. But someone had heard of a Mogul emperor and gave his name to a small farm. Perhaps a daughter, who read novels or poetry, an exotic name that caught her fancy. Her father, to indulge her, in his slow, clumsy hand wrote it as she said it, onto the title deeds, and claimed a bit of history for his own.

 

Home in the meadows,

still as stone in the stream,

basks in ancient splendour.

Sun-charred laughter

Photo©Arun Kulshreshtha.

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Sunlight roars with a fiery voice,

Beneath its claws red stone flakes fall,

Your laughter breaks like charred black twigs.

 

As summer crawls from beneath the shade

Of spreading trees, silent and grave,

Sunlight roars with a fiery voice.

 

Harsh, it tears the walls, the heat

That pours from roof tiles, dripping gold—

Beneath its claws red stone flakes fall.

 

Limp the poplars, their voices hushed,

Where birds in thoughtful silence perch,

Your laughter breaks like charred black twigs.

Letting go

Now that it comes to handing over the garden we made from not much to another couple, we worry what they will do to it. This haibun is for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday challenge, using Magic and Fairy as prompt words.

Photo ©Ronald Saunders

800px-Flickr_-_ronsaunders47_-_AN_ABANDONED_WALLED_GARDEN.

Where did it go the magic in this plot of earth, for centuries breathing between walls built by men? When did it decide to shrink back to the core, to draw in its roots and ravel up the climbing tendrils of growth? Dry now, black loam sucked grey and listless, it bakes in the sun, littered with shrivelled leaf and the careless refuse of hands that never gardened, never used a hoe or a spade. We tried, feeding it with compost and watering the dusty crust, but our tender gestures came too late. The deepest roots are failing, flowers falling and leaves spotted with fatigue. Soon there will be a swimming pool here, and plastic grass for sun loungers.

I never thought it possible to kill the spirit of the earth with neglect.

 

Dust blows in the wind,

dog barks behind a window,

cars flash past, sightless.

 

Drowning

The world is a quadrille at the moment. Here’s one for the Secret Keeper’s prompt using the words:

ROAD | ESCAPE | RAIN | RUBY | SING

1024px-Winslow_Homer_-_Moonlight_on_the_Water_(1890s)

 

This road leads nowhere,

no escape,

no singing of joyful songs,

no wind chimes,

no green light shines among rubies

at the bottom of the pool.

 

Rain falls all over the world tonight,

and the light of the moon

is quenched in well water.