Lamplighter

Surreal Photography by Platon Yurich

I saw a whistling ghost at dusk.
A small whirl of leaves sucked up behind him.
A ladder slung over his shoulder,
A lamp in his hand
And the glow of light after light
Hung in his wake.

I pressed my face against the pane at dawn.
But all I saw were the lights
Go out, one by one.

Linking this to The Sunday Muse Blogspot. (http://thesundaymuse.blogspot.com/)

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I Just Wondered …

Photo Credit: Steven S. Wallace

Ignoring obvious metaphor,
A towering one no doubt,
I wondered ‘bout the reaper
The tree saw in the drought.

Was he like a bony man
Who had a bony grin?
Or was he made of leafless wood
And had a twiggy chin?

And that poor splattered jackdaw
P’raps fallen from that tree,
Had he met his grim version,
Less man, but more birdy?

And what about the roses,
Their sprays a browning clump,
Was their demise first signalled
By a thorny figured stump?

And do they all hold sickles,
And do they all wear hoods?
But, mostly, do they like their job,
Or feel misunderstood?

Linking this to the w3 challenge on the Skeptic’s Kaddish, where this week Steven S. Wallace invites us to write an ekphrastic poem in response to this photo.:(https://skepticskaddish.com/2022/08/31/w3-prompt-18-weave-written-weekly/).

Lady Libretto

Surreal Photo, manipulations by Justin Peters

She sings her tale as lyrically as any opera.
From the mountains, where breath is ice and air is thin,
she skips an elaborate path,
a trilling coloratura over rocks as worn as time.
Distracted on her way by willowed inlets
and the bel canto of romantic wallows
where love is lost and found
and lost again.
Until the grand finale –
that final leap into clouded oblivion –
as her aria lifts higher than a falcon
before she succumbs,
her fate written,
falling to a clash of cymbals
and the crash of rapturous applause.

Linking this to The Sunday Muse Blog spot (http://thesundaymuse.blogspot.com/) where Carrie supplied this fabulous image and Sammi’s Weekend Word Prompts (https://sammiscribbles.wordpress.com/2022/08/27/weekend-writing-prompt-274-opera/) where we are invited to write 95 words exactly and include the word ‘opera’.

(NB: A Falcon soprano has a deeper register than a Coloratura soprano).

Waking up to dervishes.

https://www.pexels.com/@quang-nguyen-vinh-222549/

Morning tugs at the fog,
like a child tugging at its mother’s sheets.
Hills, shoulders, emerge from the night,
blinking in virgin light, unsullied with the day.
Gulls and shrill voices fill the air,
whirling dervishes of energy,
looking for scraps, fingers of toast.

Linking this to d’Verse Poets Monday Quadrille. This week Linda Lee Lyberg is hosting, and has chosen the word ‘morning’ for our 44 word quadrille. See more at:(https://dversepoets.com/2022/08/22/quadrille-158-morning-has-broken/).

No More.

Image courtesy of Pexels.com

No longer will I be jiggled or sawn.
Don’t furrow your brow as if you don’t understand,
There is no puzzle to be found.

Forget the perfect home,
Shaping me until I fit,
No longer will I be jiggled or sawn.

No eager pieces clattering in the box,
Or spread out on the table, patient for your touch.
Don’t furrow your brow as if you don’t understand.

There’s a new picture now,
A true image that’s whole.
There is no puzzle to be found.

Linking this to the W3 challenge on the Skeptic’s Kaddish and in response to Punam’s invitation to write a cascade poem, on the theme of freedom, and to include some personification. I have to admit I struggled with this – which I feel shows in its reading. It needs more work, but I know if I don’t post it now I will miss the deadline (again).

Transient Smudges

The Acer’s tiny fluttering hands are prematurely red-tinged,
waving above the jerky staccato line of ants dancing along the rim of
its terracotta pot.
What is it that feels strange?
Is it the dryness – the heat without humidity?
There is an odd coolness in the house despite the weather.
Outside the sun still has its bake and slap of heat,
but something is off kilter.
There is an abstraction.
A feeling of waitingness.
It’s not just my garden holding its breath,
desperate for a drink of rain.
It feels as if the world teeters on a perpetual cusp,
and we are waiting.
For lives to start and wars to end.
Creation, annihilation.
The next minute, the next week,
As if life is a universal wait.
Dotted here and there with moments.
Transient as the pattern of black smudges moving on the pot.

Thrilled to have my poem published today on Spillwords (https://spillwords.com/transient-smudges/).

Holding On

The boat rocks unmercifully, buckets of waste slop onto the boards, women moan and children faintly mew. The air is so fetid it is difficult to breathe. I close my eyes and feel myself succumbing to an inevitable despair. I am surely lost. We all are. My mind scrabbles vainly at imagined roots, looking to grab anything that will lead me back to happier memories. Then, just as it seems hopeless, as if I have fallen so far into dark introspection that I will never be able to pull myself back up through the deep caves of thought, I hear a voice that sings a familiar song. It is a song from my homeland, sung in the dialect of drystone walls, dusty paths and black carob pods rustling on branches. One voice becomes two, becomes four, until the whole deck fills with its comfort.

Linking this to Prosery Monday at d’Verse poets (https://dversepoets.com/2022/08/15/dverse-prosery-monday-a-voice-that-sings/). The quote Lisa has asked to insert in our prose (of 144 words or less) is: ‘Through the deep caves of thought I hear a voice that sings’ and is taken from The Chambered Nautilus by Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

Thermal Imaging

Above, an infinity of blue –
deep and still and featureless.
Until,
a distant tchacking heralds a tide of jackdaws,
spiralling in a whirlpool of flight,
a helix of black morse code,
dots and dashes revealing
the invisible,
like dust brushed onto fingerprints,
nature’s imagers.

Linking this to The Sunday Muse Blogspot, where Carrie is focussing on all things feathered this week. http://thesundaymuse.blogspot.com/. After seeing the prompt, I sat outside in the shade with my coffee and saw a swathe of hundreds of jackdaws overhead. They caught a thermal and twirled higher and higher. It was wonderful to watch.