Monday, April 7, 2008

Cycles


naked
at last I stand on the savannah

the sun carries away
the final day

the flat acacia supports twilight

all others have gone
into the long night
of a thousand years

over at last
the millennia

crickets smooth the grass
with song

the last word
or the first

I raise my arms
to become
the mountain in some new creation

Eve steps lightly from behind

this time she will not charm
or listen to the twisted vine

38 comments:

TomCat said...

Steer clear of that apple tree. ;-)

Julie at Virtual Nexus said...

The cosmic theme and the photo are an
elegant match...

Raven said...

"I raise my arms to become the mountain in some new creation" - beautiful...

Charles Gramlich said...

I agree with Raven. That line kicks ass.

The whole thing is great, though.

Lane said...

You've made it sound peaceful to be the last man standing - and under such a sky!

I like this very much. Each word is so precisely chosen:-)

Lisa said...

I love the imagery of "the sun carries away the final day", "the flat acacia supports twilight" and "crickets smooth the grass with song". Is there a name for what it is that you're doing there?

This poem conveys such a sense of oneness and solitude, all at once.

SandyCarlson said...

Billy, This poem is filled with wonderful images that open up surprise after surprise. It's gorgeous and deserves a wide audience.

I am trying to imagine Eve's poem in response.

Geraldine said...

I love the way your poetry 'packs a punch' again and again Billy.

I also sense that we are sharing a bit of the same wavelength this past couple of days;given this beautiful work and my Thoughts at Twilight.

I'm also wondering what Eve's response would/will be. Perhaps to follow?

Geraldine

www.mypoeticpath.wordpress.com

Janice Thomson said...

Beautiful William - each line to be pondered, savored and rejoiced in. The ending is delightful - though some might disagree ;)

Scott from Oregon said...

I was reminded of a day when a small, four year old Mexican boy jumped into a post hole I had just dug years back. He was in up to his waiste, and he spread his arms high and wide.

"What are you doing, Pedro?" I asked him.

"Uuuuuuh... I'm a TREE!"

Miladysa said...

Ditto Raven and Charles :-D

Jo said...

wonderful structure here, great imagery too, especially those crickets.

Billy said...

TC, LOL., Yep, gotta learn the the lesson. Would hate to see mankind screw up again!

Julie, thanks. I stumbled upon the photo by accident, but it seemed the right match.

Raven, thank you. This is a less structured poem than my last two or three. No tight imagery this time.

Charles, an ass-kicking poem !! Works for me :) It is Merwin-esque. No formal structure per se and a less precise theme. More movement, however.

Lane, there have been a lot of History Channel documentaries about doomsday scenarious lately. Maybe that's where I got the last man standing thing. Might have been stuck in my brain without realizing it.

Lisa, acacias are such interesting trees, with flat tops like tables. I think you are right. This is a peaceful poem because of the narrator's tone even though some prior catastrophe is implied. (At least it's what I was aiming for :)

Sandy, thank you! I wanted something here that was elusive and a bit more free to breathe, so to speak. Yeah--who and what is Eve in this new world. Good point?!

Geraldine, you're too kind! You and Sandy both are making me wonder about Eve here. I've never written a sequel to a poem before, but maybe ...

Janice, thanks. I didn't want to pin down a precise theme here. It's pretty open-ended by design. As to the end, I'm not at all sure what happens -:)

Scott, I like that kid!! He might be as close to the theme here as anyone :)

Miladysa, ditto on the thanks as well LOL. Much appreciated :)

Jo, I liked the cricket line myself because it gave a sense of peace to this quasi-apocalyptic poem. The structure was challenging as far as line breaks, which I changed a dozen times. Glad you liked it!

Sarah Hina said...

Just as the crickets smooth the grass, your words always shake out the wrinkles in my thoughts, Billy. Just transcendent.

What a strange peace that comes with endings...and beginnings.

And sorry I've been away so long! :)

gautami tripathy said...

Love the opening lines...

Crafty Green Poet said...

the flat acacia supports twilight really sets the scene and creates the atmosphere for me here.

paisley said...

and you are a bigger man than i to believe her... excellent write....

Lana Gramlich said...

Very nice. Steer clear of all superstitions & you'll be off to a great start. ;)

rebecca said...

I'm with Sandy Carlson. Like Marlowe and Raleigh in their respective Passionate Sheperd To His Love and The Nymph's Reply (which are my two all-time favorite poems), perhaps you should follow in the same vein?

It would be interesting seeing Eve's view, especially since he believes this time she will not charm or listen to the twisted vine...or, have things really changed?

This was terrific.

Cynthia said...

Hi Billy, this poem is beautiful
and complete, each word like a step
upon the sand.

J. Andrew Lockhart said...

I think only a person in the south can truely understand this. :)

Bernita said...

Oh geeze, I like this.

Tina Trivett said...

Beautiful...

Billy said...

Sarah, welcome back. And thanks!--I wanted a peaceful ending indeed!

Guatami, thank you very much!

Juliet, I have always found the acacia tree interesting, with its flat top. Here, it supports the universe in a sense.

paisley, I guess trust in Eve is wishful thinking perhaps :) Thanks!

Lana, I think superstition is in the DNA, but this is about a new cycle, so maybe if that little gremlin could be avoided LOL

Rebecca, thank you. I haven't read the Raleigh and Marlowe poems for a long time, but I think I need to go back and have a look. Thet are exceptional in the canon of Brit lit.

Cynthia, your comment itself is a poem!

Andrew, that is the most original comment I have ever had ... and probably true. Thanks very much!

Bernita, gracias. Every now and then I think it's good to take away punctuation, like training wheels.

Tina, hey! So glad you liked this. Hope all is well.

Casdok said...

Beautiful and peaceful. I loved it.

Billy said...

Thanks, casdok!

Britta Coleman said...

I agree, the "I raise my arms/to become/the mountain in some new creation" captures the spirit. Wonderful line.

Marja said...

Just visiting to read your wonderful poetry and yes I had a wonderful time again reading this beauty. Thanks Hope you are doing well

writtenwyrdd said...

"the flat acacia supports twilight" echoed by "I raise my arms/to become/the mountain in some new creation" is lovely parallel structure, too.

Billy said...

Britta, thanks for stopping by! YOu have a great site. Glad you enjoyed the poem -:)

Marja, good to see you again. Thanks, and hope you are doing well also.


Written, the parallel structure is something I myself didn't pick out originally, and then I realized that my mind was trying to use imagery of supporting a new beginning for man, so I kept the lines. Thanks for noticing -:)

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

Excellent poem. I definitely had that "circle of life" Lion King thing going through my head though - must have been the acacia tree ;-) Lovely free verse. Peace, JP/deb

Beloved Dreamer said...

beautiful! What a strange and wonderful image you have painted. The line"I raise my arms/to become/the mountain in some new creation" captures the spirit. Wonderful poetic verse. I love it.

love-bd

Billy said...

Deborah, having watched the Lion King 30 or 40 times when my son was growing up, I think the circle of life theme was tattoed in my brain ... but it's true nonetheless -:)

bd,it's funny, but all of these responses tell me things about a poem that I'm not aware of, such as which lines stand out. I'm not always aware of what is going to resonate. Thanks !!!

SnoopMurph said...

Wow, simply stunning and along with others, my favorite -"I raise my arms to become the mountain in some new creation." That line alone is speaking to me on a personal level, a feeling of empowerment.

Billy said...

Linda, that line keeps popping up -:) It reminds me of the saying that we're not always aware of the best things we do in any area of our lives, whether it's poetry or a simple act of kindness.

qualcosa di bello said...

surreal...a wild & free beauty in these words that carry a whole horizon of possibilities beyond what we know

lluvia said...

"crickets smooth the grass
with song"
what a lovely mepatphor!

Billy said...

qualcosa, that's an excellent comment. The poem, without being specific, opens the door to an entirely new world or universe. Thanks!

Lluvia, that was a soothing line I think. Thanks you very much.