“So I sit on the edge, wagging my feet above the abyss”
–Jim Harrison, “Bridge,” Dead Man’s Float
The sun doesn’t have to shine
nor the moon to glow and hum
her shimmery tunes
at night when all the world
seems dark and full of despair–
on the edge of the abyss,
he, she, they—perhaps I—
wondering is this it?
do not the stars twinkle
and the rivers flow to the sea
where life emerges to be
part of an endless cycle—
like despair from wishes
caught like fishes—
unable to be freed.
So, sometimes unperceived
a life not filled with joy,
tragic when it ends
in midnight pain,
a sudden downpour,
a heavy rain.
Still, the stars twinkle
with sparkling light
what may be or might
like the sun
once again come
This is another poem for Jilly’s 28 Days of Unreason, where we are writing poetry based on Jim Harrison’s poetry. This is Day 8.
I’ve also linked this to Björn’s prompt at dVerse. He asked us to write using negation. I’m not sure if this is it. . .
There are have been two recent celebrity suicides—Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain—but we all know of more–people who are not so famous.
Nice sound in these lines: “like despair from wishes
caught like fishes”
Thank you, Frank!
Beautiful writing, Merril.
Thank you very much!
You captured the mood at the edge of the abyss. It’s likely a place of more questions- not than useful answers.
I love this bit “…like despair from wishes
caught like fishes—unable to be freed…”
So sad…. yet, well penned.
I think you are right about it being a place of questions more than answers. Thank you, Vivian.
Even before I read your note at the bottom I was thinking of the news today. This is an outstanding poem that addresses some of our greatest mysteries as humans.
Thank you very much, Jilly.
This blended with your poem about the stars shining, Merril. The message may be different but I felt the two held those two lives, art, fashion, philosophy and the chef who got lost in the wake of chasing unique cultures and self lost.
I’m happy you enjoyed the poems together like that, Robin.
Who can know what clouds have obscured the stars for those who succumb to the abyss? Always remember that they are there, beyond the clouds.
Well written, Merril.
Thanks so much, Ken.
Thanks so much, Candice!
And the sister of Queen Maxima of the Netherlands.
Oh. Thank you.
I love your take on this one. in the midst of all our turmoil there are still constants that don’t change! Very Good!
Thanks so much, Dwight!
What I see at the heart of your poem is expressed in this line: ” . . . wondering is this it?”
Having it all, yet feeling a void, did Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain exclaim in despair, “Is this all there is?”
Thank you, Marian. I guess we’ll never know.
Beautifully expressed ‘to live or not to live’. As so often, your rhyme is subtle enough to miss
Thank you very much, Derrick!
Wonderful poem… I hope that it’s possible to capture that hope at the edge… too many accept the fall.
“Is this it?” set the stage for this mental wondering. I like it!
Thank you, Frank. 🙂
You have captured well the edge of the abyss, and i find hope in the sun and stars that try to light our way.
Thank you very much.
A powerful poem, Merril. I, too, find hope in nature and the universe. After 9/11, the sun came up the next day. As it did after the last election.
Thank you, Carol. Yes, you are right.
I think the world will go on–not sure about humans or our society, given the current regime.
The edge is always enticing and dangerous. I think your afterthought about the recent suicides are captured well here.