(Inspired by images AB18, BB18, OVO18)
Wraiths un-gathered time,
and pools of light formed puddles on city streets
un-waded by human feet. Above, faces behind windows
watched first cherry blossoms then roses bloom,
as nature creeped while families Zoomed.
Daffodils had beckoned with smiles,
and trees waved green arms in benediction
and greeting. The river beguiled
in heron grey and jay-wing blue, the transience
and truth in each turning revealed.
Now spring comes at a slant, as a rippled glass
opening reflects and reflects–
beauty, grief, love, and regret,
the elongated shadows
on budding greens are ghosts,
the birdsong is laughter, reminders of you.
This is my poem for Day 18 of Paul Brookes Poetry Month Ekphrastic Challenge. You can see the art and read the other poems here. I’m also sharing it with dVerse. I’m hosting today, and the prompt is windows. Today is the anniversary of my mom’s death three years ago when the world shut down from COVID. Our cat Mickey had died earlier that same week. My dad also died in the spring many years ago, but both my children were born in February (count backwards). I have complicated feelings about spring!
You can’t tell here, but we’re sitting in front of a large window of her building’s lobby.
Reblogged this on The Wombwell Rainbow.
Thank you, Paul.
The separation between the inside and the outside of the window works so well with the separation between now and the past in those memories.
Thank you so much! That’s such a perceptive comment. I appreciate it, Björn!
A gorgeous spring saudade, Merril. I especially love the opening lines, the un-gathering and un-wading, and the smiling daffodils in the second stanza.
Thank you so much, Kim! 💙
you just taught me the word
~ thanks, Kim!
It’s a word I discovered about a year ago, and it seemed perfect for my title. I’m pleased Kim knows it, too. 😊
Beautiful, also this wonderful photo. Yeah, we are in spring, and the sun will be with us! 😉 Best wishes, Michael
Thank you, Michael! Best wishes to you, too. 😊
wow what fantastic words and an image to match.
Thank you so much, Rog!
The then and now and the mixed feelings that spring evokes, lends a beautiful poignancy to your verse, Merril. I love it. ❤️
Thank you so much, Punam, for your lovely comment! ❤️
Thank you! 💙
What a beautiful photo of you and your mom! So nice to see your mutual love for one another, as the window tells the story of springtime behind you.
Thank you very much, Dwight. 🙂
Faces watching and so much to be seen felt and lived. Nice one Merril.
Thanks for dropping by my blog.
Thank you so much, Gillena, and you’re welcome! ❤️
These anniversaries are so hard. I love the last stanza of your poem, a perfect evocation of saudade. This line is brilliant: “Now spring comes at a slant, as a rippled glass.”
Thank you so much, Liz.
I remember now that saudade is a word/concept you like, so I’m pleased I evoked it. 💙
You’re welcome, Merril. 🙂
You’ve done a lovely job expressing your understandably “complicated feelings about spring” Merril. Your comment allows for a deeper reading of the poem. “The transience and truth in each turning revealed.” So much more than simply a joyous ode to spring. And again, a powerful last line that brings it all home – to the heart.
Thank you very much, Chris. I appreciate your kind words and thoughtful reading.
It just happened that when I saw the ekphrastic prompt images a few days ago, I realized they’d fit my own prompt.
My pleasure Merril. It was also nice to simply go to your space and read a number of your poems together. I would like to do this more with my WP Reader and the poets I really enjoy. In general my tendency is to read what’s been posted (across the board) on any given day. Lately I’ve had less time, so I either miss, and/or often (I hate to say it but), sort of bomb through everyone’s work. The more great poets I discover – the less, I actually get to fully appreciate anyone’s work… Anyway, there’s something here worth working on.
Well, I do appreciate it! It’s so hard to keep up with everyone. I don’t respond to a lot of prompts because I know I won’t be able to read all the responses. And there are poets I follow on Twitter too . . .
I think you and your mom look a lot alike. It’s easy to see you are family.
Thank you, Claudia. 🙂
I really like pools of light “un-waded.” The mixed feelings really come across in this poem.
Thank you so much, Maria!
I have complicated feelings about May. But after a while, one learns to keep the best. 🙏🏻
Thank you. Yes, I have. 🙂
And eventually you will… 😀
My condolences, Merril. A beautiful and fitting tribute!
Thank you, Ingrid!
I kept thinking of those faces looking out instead of being out and your line:
“as nature creeped while families Zoomed”
I feel sorry for those who are prisoners in their own homes when they could be outside experiencing such beauty. 💕☺️
Thank you so much, Christine. ❤️
There are some who can’t go outside because of illness or disability, and during the lockdown especially.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t Facetime or Zoom with my mom because she couldn’t see very well.
I know that is so true Merril. I used to see relatives looking through windows to see their family members in assisted living or the nursing center. Even with Covid under control many of the elderly still don’t see their families often enough and they are confined. Just being able to sit outside in the sunshine can work wonders.
Yes. Pre-pandemic we tried to take my mom outside when we could.
That’s such a happy photo Merril. Endings are difficult enough, without all the doors and windows being closed between you. Your words convey well the deep mixture of emotions that will always haunt this time. (K)
Thank you so much for your kind words, Kerfe.
It is happy photo.
You have chosen a lovely photograph to accompany such an apt poem reflecting so well this complex time for you
Thank you so much, Derrick. 💙
Such a beautiful tribute, Merril…
Thank you, David. 💙
My heart skipped a beat, a smile spread over my face when I saw the photo of you and your precious Mother. Mother’s Day is always bittersweet for me as I imagine it is for you. The poem you shared is lovely.
Thank you so much, Helen! I appreciate your comment. 💙
I know this beautiful poem did not mean to make me cry, but it did. The intertwining of loss and imagery of Spring was so skillfully done. Oh my goodness, especially in those last three lines. It brought me to tears to imagine this pain I will still face. Thank you for sharing the special photo and especially your heart.
Sending you the biggest hug.
Oh my goodness, Mish. Thank you so much for your empathetic reaction. I appreciate the hug, and I’m sending one back to you. 💙
This is so obviously lovingly writ, and both beautiful and touching. My heart goes out to you.
Thank you so much for your kind words!
Losing a grandmother is hard, she seemed always to be there for us. Yes, we tend to become Saudade when those anniversaries come around. I lost a son-in-law and two sisters-in-law in those times, a combination of the COVID and other health situations.
Mother Nature’s greens are oblivious to our feelings, some animals seem to want to cheer or be sad with us.
Thank you, Jim. Yes nature does help, and so do pets.
I’m sorry for your losses, too.
Love how you used the separation Merril, a lovely piece, I lost my dad just over a year ago so i touched me ❤️
Thank you very much, and I’m so very sorry for your loss. That’s still so recent. ❤️
Thanks Merril ❤️
You’re very welcome! 💙
Merril, thanks for sharing the personal photo and tender poem. It seems only a window separates us from those who’ve passed on and yet we cannot see through it.
Thank you. Yes, at least we have memories like a window though.
Such beautiful imagery, Merrill. Really love it all, especially un-gathered time, un-waded by human feet, and the river in bird colors.
Thank you so much for your lovely comment!
So poignant and lovely. XO
Thank you! 💙