So many things

The NaPoWriMo prompt is to write a sad poem using short lines, and the example given is a loose form of sonnet. I’ve already written a strict form sonnet, so this is an easier one, though the lines are probably too long to be considered ‘short’ and the theme is more regret than tragedy.


There are so many things I’d like to see

Before I leave this life,

So many things I’d like to be,

More than just daughter, mother wife.

There are still things I want to do

With these hands, this mind

While they still work, I thought you knew—

Perhaps familiarity and love grew too entwined.

I intend to dig down to the heart

You’ve never understood through all these years

And shape my clay with my own art,

If there’s still time for more than angry tears.

But my sands sift as fast as for the others,

The unfulfilled daughters, wives and mothers.


Spring sowing

A pantoum for the dverse prompt about time, not really sticking very closely to Ecclesiastes.


This is the time of sowing now that spring,

The gentle season coaxes cold be gone

Though nights are crisp. The geese are on the wing,

While thrush and robin rival songs at dawn.


The gentle season coaxes cold be gone,

Nest-builders squabble for the sheltered places,

While thrush and robin rival songs at dawn;

We watch the stars fade mirrored in our faces.


Nest-builders squabble for the sheltered places,

Hare child crouches in the grass alone,

We watch the stars fade, mirrored in our faces,

The sadness that our own nestlings have flown.



Hare child crouches in the grass alone

Though nights are crisp. We watch geese on the wing

With sadness that our own nestlings have flown;

This is their time for sowing now, this spring.


November Yeats Challenge: Day Two

Another darkly mysterious quote for the dark season. There may be a name for the form my poem has taken—8 8 8 4 8 8 8 4 8 8 8 8 4—but if there is I don’t know it. Feel free to use it, or a variant of it with a rhyme scheme perhaps.

I’m posting this one in the dverse open link night. I am dedicating this month to Yeats, a line every day, so look in and be inspired.


“… the dark folk who live in souls
Of passionate men, like bats in the dead trees;” —W.B. Yeats


They are there at break of day


They are there at the break of day,

As they were when the sun went down,

The paper whispered voices of

Our secrets dark.


In the stirred river-bottom mud,

As in the chill between the stars,

The airless catch in the throat, lie

The ghosts of loss.


Yet when the sun goes down I hear,

Or seem to, beating in the air,

Like the soft wings of the robin,

The plush bestirrings of the bat,

Sighs of regret.



Storms and sunsets



That was the other speaking, not me,

not the one you know.

The one you know would never dare

look you in the eye,

tell you unpleasant home truths,

ruffle peacock feathers.

Why? For fear of this—

the slamming door.


In the sunset of your leaving,

even the cherry blossom drips scarlet,

and the sky bleeds with my heart,

black swallows dart,

filling the hollows

with their strident laughter.


Hands and heart tied to you,

I follow, a limping bird,

but would I take the right path,

would I even know it,

had I the choice?


Bright night-velvet fades to grey,

I cringe from the uncompromising light

that floods the empty white space

with cold tomorrows.

A vision

Still trying to catch up on the prompts. This is for today’s Daily Post prompt: Vision.

painting ©Georg Königstein


What do I see amid the swirling hues,

Coloured sand, sea mist in mauves and blues,

Or a vision of a dream not meant for mine?


Dissolving faces, scenes of noise and light,

Happiness and laughter in the night,

Twist and curl and climb, a flowered vine.


I tip the misty contents on the sand,

They seep away, I touch with trembling hand

The stain they leave as blood red as dark wine.


A gull screams at the racing tide,

I search but there is nowhere I can hide,

The dream has left me at the high tide line.


Dull, dim light
Seeps through lowering cloud
The bright colours of yesterday
Faded to a universal grey.
The roses hang forlorn
Their perfume lost in the oily air.
Rain falls, pounding petals
With pitiless indifference.
How hard now to recall
The soft touch of the sun
On skin that tingles with the sting of steely shafts
And the brave spring song of the birds,
A mournful piping beneath the eaves.
How easy to fall from that quiet happiness
As we sat beneath the bird-singing trees,
The touch of your hand
Fainter now than the sound of raindrops,
Elusive as the scent of roses.
How easy to sink among the scattered petals
Into the clinging, sucking mud.