This Town

“It will be long ere the marshes resume,
I will be long ere the earliest bird:
So close the windows and not hear the wind,
But see all wind-stirred.”
— Robert Frost, Now Close The Windows

This town, a ghost
Haunting; absent shadows
They lie, uncovered
And weigh heavy on
Mankind’s woven tomb
Absent soil or mourners,
Absent loving words;
No flowers left to bloom ~
It will be long ere the marshes resume

This town, an echo
Driven into stone
By callused hearts,
As if it were flesh;
And mortar tears
Veil the cries of the Unheard,
Now frozen,
Bury words in darkest night;
Brand dreams of summer days absurd ~
I will be long ere the earliest bird

This town, a song
Of long forgotten days;
Of courage, worn away
By rain’s steady trick (trick?) trick-le;
Dancers’ feet now heavy, weighed with years of mud,
Ancient tunes, hollow; stripped and skinned,
Taunt drowning minds
With adjunct notes,
Leave consciousness thinned ~
So close the windows and not hear the wind

This town, a paradigm;
Indifference taped to every door,
Nailed to every soul that roams the streets.
The crosses we bear
Tower high above our heads,
Leave meaning absent word;
So we squint;
Cover eyes with shades of mirth,
Hold on to fraying dreams, now blurred ~
But (at day’s end) see all wind-stirred.

Samuel Peralta over at dVerse has us experimenting with the Glosa, a form of poetry of the late 14th century. It starts out with the Cabeza, four lines I borrowed from the marvellous Robert Frost, which provide the ending lines for the following four stanzas.  This is my contribution to Samuel’s great challenge.
Grab a drink and join us at the bar!


42 thoughts on “This Town

  1. Excellent rendering of the form, Miriam. And, of course, choosing Frost was an excellent inspirations. I found you very skillfully wove the rhyming in and your use of repetition worked really well. Just heard a lecture on Calvino’s novella “Invisible City.” This poem brought that to mind for me.


  2. Such an inspired choice from Frost’s works as a cabeza, and you made amazing use of it – extending his thought into something more than the original conception, an ode to a dying town. And you went further than required here, using other poetic devices – the reptitions in the first lines, the onomatopaeia (trick, trick, trickle) – all these and the seamless weaving of Frost’s lines with your own, these manage to convey the sadness of such decay. Beautiful, melancholic, effective.


    • Samuel, I am speechless. Thank you for your wonderful comment – it means a lot to hear such wonderful words from such a great poet. Thanks again for the challenge – I always enjoy you hosting at dVerse.


  3. Oh, a dying town is such a sad thing and your glosa took me right into the heart of the decline. I imagined myself sitting on the bench in your header image, just on the outskirts of town, as I noted the changing skyline. In the small town where I have lived for decades the tallest structure was the huge grain elevator attached to the farm store. The skyline was so strange after they tore it down to build a nice new store. So, your poem set me to dreaming, as it was so beautiful.


  4. Pingback: Fourth Attempt At Circus Imagery | The Weltschmerz Collection

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