Still Love

Namra, spinner of tales, weaved her way into his naivety. Vulnerable, unaware of her guile, he pledged his love, earthly possessions, and his soul. In dark of night, she promised nirvana whilst leading him to the place of angels. Unbeknownst to him, a destination not where spirits soar; rather where they stand in frozen state. Cold stone in the midst of searing heat. Those who dared to fly, minus forearms or bent with ravaged wings. Some forever with fingertip to lips, hushing final cries of hope. Angels, sentinels of death, where living bow their heads.

He followed, unaware that she is a collector. Unaware she lures the unsuspecting to a marble bed. Lies with them but for a moment until the aphrodisiac of her silken ways, overcomes their senses. Seers say his body awakened in the cold to emptiness. That he lies now through the ages, eyes open, awaiting her return. Unaware that silken threads forever lace round a rusted metal lock. A comfortless duvet of intricacy, barely moving in the languid breath of summer winds. He is forever unaware that she continually seeks new prey. Promising an ecstasy of love to rival the ages, but caring not for the soul.

Photos from Recoleta, an amazing cemetery in Buenos Aires, where Evita is buried. We had a wonderful private tour of the city with Ceri of Buenos Tours, which culminated at Recoleta. A word of explanation: I’ve been on back-to-back cruises to South America and now heading to Antarctica, hence have not been able to post often (very limited internet access). I’m scheduling this so it will post for OLN. Consider this prose poetry.

Mountain Trek

Field of delicate buttercups
like bits of scattered sun.

Yellow flowers frothing,
undulating in mountain breeze.

Nature’s golden comforter
warmth beneath her jewel-blue sky.

Photos from yesterday’s mountain trek through the Magellan National Forest in Punta Arenas, Chile. A six mile hike: three from 800 feet above sea level, starting in fields of buttercups and wind-blasted tree remains to 1900 feet above sea level with fantastic views of the Magellan Straits, and three back down. A glorious day.

Valparaiso, Chile

I stand atop Casa Galos’ rooftop terrace, seeking the moon which appears in Chicago, Paris, and Vienna. Cities that progressed with time. Here I see only bright orbs. Street lights that blanket the cerros – hills holding once architectural gems beside corrugated metal homes. Erosion defied by vibrant street art.

Twentieth century’s magnificent achievement, the Panama Canal, thief of Valparaiso’s livelihood. And this past month, deserted by the cruiseship industry, as if a pickpocket stole her last coin. A missing moon tonight, and I wonder if it will ever reappear to illuminate this city’s spirit again.

blood moon phenomenon
shrunk to crescent sliver shard –
will you wax again?

Scheherazade

Across the page my pen does fly
If, not, why
A pathway straight to and from my . . .
He, she, I
. . . Brain

I tell my story, tell again
First, next, then
Revise and edit with my pen
House, place, den
Me
Scheherazade
Storyteller

Written by Stella Hallberg, my granddaughter, who will soon be 11. She and I trade poetry prompts each month. She decided we would start the year with the same word, scheherazade. This is her poem….as she wrote it. No edits by me. It fits beautifully with Bjorn’s prompt for today at dVerse. He asks us to recognize the importance of silence in poetry. Silence can be illustrated with various punctuation, including the ellipsis . . . which Stella uses in her poem. Stella explained to me “The syllable pattern is something I might have made up. I did 8, 3, 8, 3, 1 twice, but at the end I added 5, 4. Do you like it?”  Yes, Stella, I do! 🙂

 

 

The Story Teller

Her clan’s scheherazade.
Last in her lineage,
skilled by birthright
in the ancient art.

She follows the stars.
Finds her way,
village by village
to listen, to tell.

Stories they share
of birth, death, harvest,
and ceremonial hunts.
All grace her plots.

Mitochondrial details
events infused by voice,
sadness, daily banter, and joy.
Emotional spectrum wide and deep.

She the vessel of tales,
ewer of their heritage.
She is their story teller,
the carrier of life.

Written for my almost 11-year-old granddaughter who decided we should start the year with the same prompt word, “scheherazade,” meaning storyteller. Also penned for dVerse where Paul hosts today, with the word “grace” for a prompt. Apologies in advance to all who read and comment — it may take a while to respond as we embark today on a 34 day journey to S. America and Antarctica! 

 

Gatherings

My first eighteen years ~
we enjoyed picnics
backyard fun,
family celebrations and holidays.
Cacophonies of raucous laughter and glee.

Hiatus years, different byways ~
address books with edit over edit.
Catch-up Christmas times
marked by postage-due,
aging faces afloat in photo cards.

Reunions of late, any time of year ~
increase in frequency.
Convene in funeral homes,
adjourn with casseroles
served over memories.

Still shadows walk beside me ~
aunts, uncles, cousins.
Will I be the last?
Sole survivor of happy clan,
left to sit with photo albums,
colors fading beyond the years.

Motivated by Misky’s Twiglet prompt, “still shadows.”  A twiglet is a short phrase meant to motivate thoughts. Photos from many many years ago when we often gathered with aunts and uncles and cousins – we had so much fun together in those days when the entire family lived nearby. Now, sadly, all the aunts and uncles, my folks and brother, and some of my cousins, have passed on from this life. Others live far from me. Family is always dear — no matter how far and no matter if earthly or not.  

 

tanka

one christmas mass past
my hands clasped, so smooth, so young
hers riddled vein-blue ~
snow covers ground, gently still
my hands hued with age, missing hers

Our Christmas tree is a memory tree. The bell from my mother’s tree, when she was a little girl. The Santa my brother made in first grade. He was nine years older than me and died far far too young at fifty-one. The airplane from my father’s tree when he was a little boy. Christmas brings so many memories of cherished times past with relatives, friends and family. Merry Christmas, everyone!
Tanka form: 5 lines, syllables of 5-7-5-7-7. There should be a “twist” or change that occurs between lines 3 and 4.

Advent

I sit silently this early morn,
scenes from yesterdays
flickering through my mind.

Their childhood. My childhood.
Her sliver-thin sugar cookies,
his wool overcoat and black galoshes.

Seasonal luminaries.
These scenes from Christmas past
remembered through the hush of time.

Light shafts begin to intrude,
cast shapes upon the floor.
Today encroaches as the rising dawn.

Reluctantly I stir,
take up requirements of the day
but a promise I do make.

On Christmas Day, in early morn
I shall return to these shadows,
to this quiet place of calm.

I shall recall again the way it was,
the ones who were, those many times.
And I shall whisper to my memories,
Merry Christmas to all.

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