Re-volution

Evolution stutters.
Stuff banks up, then cartwheels suddenly.
Boys become men. A woman dies.
A red leaf spirals down.
The rain starts – did you feel a drop?
I think I did – and then we’re running
under cover. Apples ripen.

These empty streets –
are they tomorrow
or a week ago? I couldn’t say.
Sculpted skies, birds calling,
spring morphing into summer
morphing into autumn.

How much do memories cost, then?
They sink into the soil,
red ice-pops melting sticky
the ground mouth-gaping,
gulping at ersatz cherry juice.

Stuff banks up. A pushchair and a rainbow dress,
sunshine on water. Piles of books,
things fluttering through my fingers.

Wait. I scribble in a yellow notebook,
tap on a keyboard,
then a typewriter,
I paint my phrases
onto parchment, vellum,
press letters into clay,
I chisel words into the rock.

I draw a horse head
on a half-lit wall.

Tell me a story. I’m all out of words.

It’s Peter’s first night hosting at dVerse, and he’s given us an exercise in editing. You can read the details here: https://dversepoets.com/2020/09/10/mtb-write-like-a-dog-edit-like-a-cat/

I don’t do much editing. I spend a lot of time working a poem out in my head, so I think I edit before I commit anything to paper. However, I regularly write for Brendan’s earthweal prompts and I find those poems tend to be a bit more relaxed and free-form than my dVerse poems. This was originally an earthweal poem. Do check earthweal out.

Fate – prosery for dVerse

They work in a cottage on the mountainside. Granny spins, Mamma weaves, Daughter trims the threads. The tapestry they make is full of stories – golden adventures, scarlet passions, grey tragedies.

Sometimes Daughter, distracted by a bird at the window, misses a chance to trim. Granny shakes her head. Or Daughter pleads for more of the story, for a thread to be left untrimmed. Usually, Mamma says “No”.

When it is over, said and done, it was a time, and there was never enough of it.

But sometimes, Granny thinks of a woman crying over a child’s body, a man clinging to his brother’s hand…

“Leave it” she might say, if her tea has been just right, or birdsong has touched her.

Down in the city, a child’s fever breaks. A man opens his eyes. A woman steps back onto the pavement.

Merril is hosting at dVerse,and it’s Prosery time – 144 words of prose, incorporationg a quotation from a poem. Merril has given us:

“when it is over said and done

it was a time

                  and there was never enough of it.”

 –Allison Adelle Hedge Coke, “A Time”

 

Orchard:time – NaPoWriMo 3

I’m blossom-greedy, circling like a bee,
counting my chickens well before they hatch,

and, yes, the blossom – pink and white,
and the faint scent – sakura, yes, my sister

this time of year, I look for them,
the wildlings, litter-planted –

feed the soil, we say, and throw it
out the car window, tumbling down the bank –

the remnants of old orchards, standing
in suburban gardens, Orchard Avenue,

Meadow Grove, all those names recalling
the old farm, and the olden days.

We planted it 10 years ago, this orchard,
this small orchard, and it’s grown since then, added

my birthday Slack-ma-girdle, two small Bramleys
grafted for us. A sweet chestnut, in memoriam –

it was a raised fist, a defiance, an act of living
in our long, cold dying.

Come summer, we’ll be apple-greedy,
scrabbling for windfalls, peeling, chopping,

gloating over the Farmer’s Glory – sweet and heavy
on the branches, overwhelming –

by September, we’ll be glutted, gluttonous,
the whole house full of apple scent;

us and the wasps, reeling with sugar,
and the white star in Pomona’s heart;

October, we’ll have picked the last of them,
leaving just the topmost for the blackbirds

measuring time by our son’s reach –
he’s our climber, stretching highest –

January, we’ll survey them, prune them,
form the cup to catch the sunlight

that does all the magic. Yes, we’re pagan –
apples our religion.

Day 3 of NaPoWriMo, and I’m still here! Today we are asked to write a poem that covers a long period of time.

Time to – poem for dVerse

We’re not planting yet,
just digging. The long roots
of couch grass playing out
through the cool soil,
and the deep fingers
the dandelions send down
down down and the stones,
as if they were a crop themselves,
to be thrown in the barrow –
bell clang dull thud –
and the words strung
between us, planted like seeds,
the conversation growing
and drifting like those
parasol seeds from the
dandelion’s white clock.

Lillian is hosting at dVerse tonight, and we are thinking about this verse from Ecclesiastes:


“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.”
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 American Standard Version (ASV).

Lillian is hosting at dVerse tonight, and we are thinking about this verse from Ecclesiastes:


“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.”
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 American Standard Version (ASV).

I am learning to read the time – for dVerse

I am learning to read the clock.
Not the

tick tock

clock on the wall that
s/l/i/c/e/s
e/a/c/h/ m/i/n/u/t/e
into 60 straight sided sections,

or the boiling clock on my phone
that bursts a bubble every second,

but the great rolling clock of the world,
that surges and slows, so that time passes
sometimes fast as a swift flowing stream
sometimes oozing like treacle from a spoon,

that measures hours by the turning
of a sunflower, days by the life
of a butterfly, that twists and turns
back on itself, complex and complete;

and the subtle clock
that sits deep in my belly,
timing my days, whispering
hunger, sleep, morning, work,

that measures my steps,
the stirring of my coffee,
the sweep of my hand across my face.

 

 

For Mish at dVerse, who asks us to write about what we are continuing to learn.