Polly

Writings and Witterings


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VerseWrights

Good to see one of my poems featured on the VerseWrights website and Facebook page

‘Volunteers’ was inspired by Rodin’s fabulous sculpture in Calais from 1889 – according to Linduff et al[1] it serves as a monument to an occurrence in 1347 during the Hundred Years’ War, when Calais, an important French port on the English Channel, was under siege by the English for over a year. Calais commissioned Rodin to create the sculpture in 1884.

The Burghers of Calais by Auguste Rodin

The Burghers of Calais by Auguste Rodin

[1] Linduff, David G. Wilkins, Bernard Schultz, Katheryn M. (1994). Art past, art present (2nd ed. ed.). Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall. p. 454. ISBN 0-13-062084-X.


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The Journey

Riding from far North they came
through snow and sleet and sheeting rain.
Ice formed behind them, frosted, cracked
red dragon scales, in parts, looked blacked.
On wings sheer clipped, their fire breath quenched,
onward, moving South, they went.

Flying ahead of the sunset West:
werewolves; sprites in fiery vests;
pixies pointing ears to learn
where coal black jackdaws crash and burn.
There is no place to hide.

Then from the sunrise in the East
the faerie queen on bounding beast
the size of which sees grown elves weep.
They hear her voice so light (though deep)
control the slavering ride.

Inch by inch from the dry drought South
a dead sheep carried in its mouth
the Kraken, skin scabbed, wracked and ripped
scouts for the havering hare who nips
at the frail fingers of sylvan wamblers.

Polly Robinson © 2014

Reposting this especially for Poetics: Snowed Under, Iced In, Cosying Up – not sure about the ‘cosying up’ bit though… ;)


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Persephone

This is the latest version of my ekphrastic poem about Persephone.

My Sweet Rose (or The Soul of the Rose) John William Waterhouse

My Sweet Rose (or The Soul of the Rose)
John William Waterhouse

Persephone

Radiant beauty,
goddess of the spring,
scent of the rose
against your brow’s wing;
fertile maid of life…and death.

Seeds of the fruits
of the field.

She meanders in meadows
of fragrant flowers,
roses, violets, hyacinths in bowers.
She’s seized, snatched,
carried off;
stolen by Hades
in a golden
four-horsed
chariot.

And Demeter weeps.

Odysseus at the House of Death
sees a wraith
to make one ache.

Persephone
becomes the curse of dead souls.
Men distrust her six months here,
six months there.

It is said:
“This is no deception sent by Queen Persephone,
this is the way of mortals when we die.”

Feel the horror queen’s light breath.

But wait!
A kindness yet,
to let the souls return.

Springtime Goddess of Rebirth –
mystery initiations –
sudden depressions give way to the mysteries,
a better life,
a different fate after death.

Repeat to the beginning,
seeds of the fruits
of the field.
All shall return.

She is the painted winecup,
she is: life and death,
wife, daughter,
innocence, wisdom,
death and rebirth.

And she stole the beautiful Adonis!
Oh yes!  A psychopomp…
with pomegranate seeds

and blessings
for wisdom and tranquillity.

Death
is not evil
’tis a cycle
for good.

Repeat to the beginning,
seeds of the fruits
of the field.
All shall return.

Polly Robinson © 2014


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No Creosote

In the potting shed
the scent of ancient creosote
wafts in heavy summer heat.
Years of grandpa, pipe in mouth,
leaning against the wall as
grandma wielded the black
brush and yelled,

‘Get back you
kids,’

followed by her gap-tooth grin.
She lives in the still-
standing walls…
no creosote
now.

Polly Robinson © 2014

Potting shed


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Spring

Frost surprises
on fewer mornings
beneath the clearest blue sky.
A mirror to springtime
in a slew of white
feathered streaks.

The birds cheep, excited,
trees are in bud; sticky buds
give way to unfurling green.
Cyclamen leaves peek.

The lambs shout to their ma’s,
and soft, soft, the
wood pigeon coos.

Oh, and the daffodils,
the daffodils,
the glorious yellow trumpeting
daffodils.

As my tea steams
in the chill morning air,
I look around
and beam,
at work
waiting
to begin.

 

Polly Robinson © 2014

Photo from imagerail.com

Photo from imagerail.com


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Flaxy Wings

Sprout wings, flaxy wings,
sparkle in the sunshine wings,
taut tensile gossamer
gentle and edged in springtime green.

Then, fly from hilltop
to hilltop marking
wayside stones and bones;
flit through tall and towering trees,
as a fresh damply morning
chuckles the nose.

The dew glints
and we skim archaic tracks.

Polly Robinson © 2014

dewy grass