Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Readwritepoem: Ekphrasis

Image by Rick Mobbs of Mine Enemy Grows Older

Portrait of Nanda
In an empty room, in the gathering dark
I sit in a green chair,
hands in my lap. I am still

thinking about the way that you left.
The wind and the rain blew in through the door
of the empty room, in the gathering dark.

the peach trees we planted grow by the road
where you drove away. You did not look back
at the trees, or the room where I am. Still,

I sit here, thinking about you, and the trees
which bore this summer one solitary peach.
I plucked it last night in the gathering dark

and thought of sap rising, and the veins in my body
like branching twigs, enclosing my heart
ripe like a peach. I am still

thinking of the juice of the peach,
and the worm inside, and you
far away in the gathering dark,
and like the trees, I am still.

Ekphrasis (poetry inspired by an image) for readwritepoem
I decided to make it a double challenge and write a villanelle - although I have interpreted the form rather loosely and dropped the rhyme scheme, and also repeated ends of lines rather than whole lines.


Jenn: said...

I love your adaptation of the villanelle. It gives the reading familiarity and rhythm, and your words shine clear without the strictness of the form taking center stage. The 5th stanza is my favorite.

Anonymous said...

You create a vivid picture of departure, and the single remaining pleasure polluted. Wonderful.

Anonymous said...

I, too, like what you've done with the form. The repetition is wonderful and the image of the veins like branching twigs -- excellent.

Jessica said...

Great repetition of the "i am still" refrain. I also love the last stanza, with the juicy-ness of the peach and the worm.

Anonymous said...

Lovely and sad. I like the way you exploit the ambiguity of meaning of "still", and the repetitions of "gathering dark" are especially powerful.

Anonymous said...

The repetition works well, and I like the way the peach images run through the poem. Intriguing, because looking at the picture the seems a long way from the fruitful outdoors of an orchard... but many things can lurk inside!

Anonymous said...

Your poem captures well the somber, haunting look of Nanda's face, and creates a poignant scenario surrounding her lost love. Beautifully written.

Andy Sewina said...

I like the way you have captured the stillness of this picture and no matter where her thoughts lead her she still comes back to say I am still.

Good use of the prompt and nice adaption of the form.