Metaphoric Journey

She remembers hot spots,
hands thrown up in disgust.
Exploded resentment
spewed words laced in spittle.

She walks this Icelandic landscape alone
breathing sulfuric stench.
Eyes sting, nostrils flare.
She feels and sees and hears
the earth stew, bubble,
seethe and steam.

Flumes sputter, gain strength,
spray vitriolic anger.
Shielding her eyes,
she searches for some shade of green,
some sign of hope
beyond this godforsaken land.

If she stands still
she understands now,
she will be consumed.
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Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Our host is Kim and she’s talking about “flexing your verbs” in a poem about a landscape. Photos were taken outside Reykjavik, Iceland on our recent trip. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come imbibe some verbs with us!

32 thoughts on “Metaphoric Journey

  1. kim881 July 25, 2017 / 3:28 pm

    That’s some landscape to write about, lLillian! I’ve heard the Icelandic geysers and hot springs are spectacular.I especially love way you’ve flexed your verbs in the lines:
    ‘Exploded resentment
    spewed words laced in spittle’;
    ‘…earth stew, bubble,
    seethe and steam’;
    and
    ‘Flumes sputter, gain strength,
    spray vitriolic anger’.

    I imagine it would be easy to be consumed by that landscape – it’s untamed and fascinating!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:00 am

      Thanks, Kim. I must say, I really enjoyed this prompt and paying particular attention to verbs 🙂 Have really enjoyed others’ posts….perhaps a lesson here that flexing our verbs adds to engagement by the reader. Glad you enjoyed this one and yes — we found Iceland an amazing landscape to visit!

      Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:02 am

      The land itself seemed so angry — all that sputtering. Where we were here, there were no huge geyesers like what we saw in New Zealand. I think the huge geysers, that explosion of all that water, seems more graceful, if that makes sense. This sputtering and spitting and spewing and steaming seemed like there was great anger below the surface. And to me, that’s sometimes what happens with humans too!

      Like

      • Jane Dougherty July 26, 2017 / 7:09 am

        I can understand that. It’s a place I’d love to visit, even if the idea rather terrifies me. Such an inhospitable landscape, yet full of beauty.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Frank Hubeny July 25, 2017 / 4:05 pm

    I haven’t been to Iceland, but from your description it sounds like it might be interesting. I will have to avoid being consumed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:04 am

      Yes! We did NZ and Australia the year before this trip. The geysers at (I may spell this wrong) Rotarua?? were spectacular. But this was so barren in comparison, and none of the huge explosions of water which we saw in NZ. I found that more graceful….when it’s just the sputtering and spewing it seems much more angry!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. kanzensakura July 25, 2017 / 5:39 pm

    Oh my Lillian. the landscape sounds like an angry woman – a VERY angry woman – spewing, spitting, vitriolic, bubble, steam, stew,,,,this is an excellent description of a hotsprings earth. Wonderful job.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:05 am

      Smiling I am….when you see those verbs all together, without the words in between, it seems even more ANGRY! Glad you enjoyed.

      Like

  4. Waltermarks July 25, 2017 / 7:27 pm

    Yes, the landscape Is a stewing vitriolic woman. Hayes Spencer had it right. What a wonderfull metaphoric journey!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:05 am

      Love that word “vitriolic.” Some words are just more fun to say 🙂 Glad you enjoyed.

      Like

  5. Glenn Buttkus July 25, 2017 / 8:08 pm

    Love this journey, moment, message. The locale reminds me of the vast steaming lava fields near the active volcano on the south side at Hilo, Hawaii. Yup, we must keep moving or lethargy, disease, or chaos will overtake us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:07 am

      About 12 years ago we were on the Big Island (for our 3rd time) and went on a lava walk. Started as dusk was nearing….and ended walking back with flashlights. This was a guided tour — only about 8 of us. The lava was oozing very slowly and we walked right up to it. It made for the most amazing Christmas card we’ve ever sent! 🙂

      Like

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:08 am

      Thank you so much, Maureen, for your kind words. Glad you enjoyed!

      Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:08 am

      I loved working with verbs….quite a fun prompt. Glad you enjoyed.

      Like

  6. Sumana Roy July 26, 2017 / 12:11 am

    “She feels and sees and hears
    the earth stew, bubble,
    seethe and steam.”…….You’ve made us see this within. Love how the verbs truly flex their muscles 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:09 am

      This was a fun prompt, right? I’d never thought of verbs “flexing their muscles” but the idea of their importance cannot be denied. They really engage the reader that’s for sure. Glad you enjoyed!

      Like

  7. sarahsouthwest July 26, 2017 / 5:13 am

    I read it as being a landscape poem first, and then a relationship poem. It works both ways, and it works as a melding of the two. Some places feel like they resent humans, and you capture that so well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 26, 2017 / 7:12 am

      YES YES YES! Thank you Sarah. That’s exactly how it was meant. And oh yes….this earth so angry at her human inhabitants that she has removed the cooling greens and is sputtering in her anger. And yes…it is the woman trekker, perhaps a tourist by herself, remembering the anger in the relationship she has perhaps just walked out on, seeing that anger here in this landscape, and deciding she must move on….Thanks soooo much for your comment here. Although poetry and any writing is open for interpretation once it leaves our pens, and the main thing is for the reader to connect with the writing in their own way, it is truly a delight when someone reads it exactly as you’ve meant it! 🙂 hugs to you this morning, Sarah!

      Like

  8. Nan Mykel July 26, 2017 / 11:29 pm

    What power and out of sight images! If she stands still
    she understands now,
    she will be consumed. –Perfect ending. The images feel like a slap in he face (in a good way).

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 31, 2017 / 8:55 am

      Thanks, Nan. Glad you enjoyed this one. The Icelandic landscape was amazing to see!

      Like

  9. mandibelle16 July 29, 2017 / 9:17 pm

    I much anger and darkness. So much she’ll be consumed. I guess best to walk in the cool air and get it out of her, exhaust herself. Perhaps when that happens she’ll find that green space, a bit of hope.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian July 31, 2017 / 8:56 am

      Thanks for the reply! Glad you enjoyed. Yes — let’s hope that hope is always over the horizon…we have only to hike a bit to find it! 🙂

      Like

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