sleepwalker s

vibrating wind–
harsh, unending,
bringing news of winter
under dusky grey,
a barrier
closing the sky

tree bones rattle
with last leaves–
night is everywhere,
with howling vision
the sanctity of sleep

retreat is impossible,
surrounded by chanting
and invisible hands–
the edge of a nightmare
on the threshold

ghostlike it journeys,
knocking on each door,
finding the cracks
in each soul,
sundering the barricades
of every defense

no prayer
or good luck charm
repels the chosen path
of this bleak revenant–
its faceless form
looms like a black tide

its cacophony rises,
too many voices calling
to distinguish the words–
what does it seek
from the fabric of the living,
now torn to shreds?

unweaving the center,
rearranging the remains–
songs of lamentation
shatter the circle,
extinguish all illusion
of rescue or escape

sleepwalker close up s

Jane Dougherty has posted 3 of her poetic responses to the Ekphrastic Review challenge that featured a painting of a town, “Noe Valley”, by Matthew Rackham Barnes.  I too found the image creepy (and I wonder if that was the artist’s intent–I actually think probably not).  My poem wasn’t chosen either, but I’ve done a collage inspired by the painting and here it is with the poem.

You can see Jane’s posts here, here, and here.