Snowfall. Night. The shore is distant. I dream of flying—but I remain enclosed within ice blue, glittering.
North seems far– where I am has no direction. The landscape retreats until almost all is trapped within dreams.
Barren seas echo with silence. The world cracks. Wind weeps in side chasms of solitude– the melting of time.
Sherry’s heartbreaking photo, above, that accompanied her prompt at earthweal to talk about the connections between life and the melting ice of the arctic, inspired the dreamscape of my shadorma chain, written also for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday, where Jules selected shadorma as this month’s form.
She did not remember the way, but she remembered the times, the place. She wanted to connect present to past. She did not know how or where to begin, and yet she needed to try to construct that bridge. Words were all she had now.
Two ways, really, even though she always pretended they were the same. Or maybe it was only her longing that failed to understand that they were two, not one.
She had been dreaming of a river. A man, a boat. Trees, weeping, or was that her own voice, crying on the wind? It had been summer once. Flowered. Sweet.
But here was the river again, littered with fallen leaves. What magic word would turn back the seasons, dispel the haze, repair a lifetime that had already disintegrated into dust?
Was she coming or going? In her dreams a voice kept repeating you have to choose. But between what? Who? Did she get to choose who would be waiting on the other side of the river? Or was she to be the one left waiting?
to begin, become the current– sing its song
Brendan at earthweal has more to say about rivers this week and poses the question: What voyages are found there, which deities are vast in its depths? It made me think of my response to the Kick-About #61 prompt, which was Molly Drake’s haunting song, “I Remember”.
I wasn’t aware of Molly’s connection to Nick Drake, but when I learned that she was his mother, Molly’s song immediately made me think of Nick’s song “River Man”. I took the feeling I got from both songs–a kind of remembering intertwined with uncertainty, loss, and the passing of time–and wrote the above prose poem, adding a haiku coda for earthweal, and some water art from my archives.
I’m honored to have been chosen by Freya Pickard and the artist who provided inspiration, Troi David Loy, as the featured artist for Pure Haiku’s Ghostlight theme. I’ve responded back with my own collage inspired by the original work for each poem. You can read my first haiku here.
Margins move, expand to new apogees, new depths– vicissitude reigns.
Riding the rainbow we leap onto the Wheel of Fortune
Change is the key word for the Year of the Tiger.
The first tiger blends Mexican and Chinese mask elements, and the second is based on Chinese children’s shoes. Tigers are considered a powerful protective motif, and are often used for children’s clothing, hats as well as shoes. Fish are added for abundance and good luck.
listen to the sound of air– filling the distance, tiny continuous hums– whispers weaving nets, forming a loose cocoon un seen, awash, present– between silences singing– distilled reflection
Brendan at earthweal this week asks us to “describe an enchanted moment”. Neither words nor images seem adequate for the sound of air, but I attempted it anyway. It doesn’t happen all the time, but sometimes when I meditate everything else fades away and I can hear the air. Most often it sounds like the image above.
But sometimes it has more clarity.
And in rare moments, it takes colors into the layers of movement.
The images were created by taking some of the art from one of my Kick-About responses to a film about light and applying Photoshop filters. I’ll get around to posting the originals at some point.
I was surprised and pleased to receive an email from Kristen at Visual Verse last week asking me if I would like to be one of the featured poets for July. She sent me the image, by Maria Victoria Rodriguez, and I sent her back my poem. You can see both here.
the landscape pauses, quiescent– waiting on the edge of movement—no time passes here– framed in memories
Colleen’s #TankaTuesday prompt this week was an interesting one–
First, choose your favorite syllabic poetry form. Write your poem.
Next, give your poem some different characteristics to make it something different. You can change the syllable count, rhyme scheme (add or get rid of it), anything you want to create a new form. Write this poem.
Give your new syllabic poetry form a name.
I chose shadorma. How to change it? I had noticed before that all the lines had odd numbers of syllables, so I added one syllable to each line, to make them all even.
landscape pauses, quiescent, waiting on movement’s edge—no time passes here– a stilled photograph of silence– time framed in memories
Thinking of a name was difficult. Shadorma seems to be totally made up, although several people noted the similarity to the word shadow. So I decided to pick a name with a beginning from light. I ended up with Liala, because I like the sound of it and the repetition of the a ending. It’s evidently a girls’ name but I could find no meaning for it.
There is a subtle difference between the odd and even syllabled poems, but I’m not sure which one I like best.
The photos are cropped versions of panoramas composed by my older daughter from photos she took in the mountains of Arizona where my father requested that we spread his ashes. My mother did not make any request except to be cremated, but we managed to find the very same place to spread her ashes years later after her death.