I have been writing about the theme of darkness recently. and working on some poems that have sat on the laptop in an unfinished state for what feels like ages. This one below, has finally found the shape I want. It started off as a long poem and has ended up very condensed. The poem just did not feel right and was trying to say too much. I think because I was in a different country and getting very excited about the landscape without being able to focus on what the poem needed. Does anyone else recognise this process? Particularly if you are writing after walking or being somewhere very new? The photo above is West Yorkshire yesterday. Good grief. It could be Canada!
Bow River, Banff
‘Then, up to our chins, we will pull the dark blanket of earth
and rest together at the end of the working day.’
Sharon Olds, The Ferryer
Tectonic plates rub together
like a conversation beneath a quilt.
Below us, the river splits in two.
The slower stream is silting up,
meandering into ox bow lakes
like a string of half-smiles.
Can you hold still — carry the long view
in your guts as mountain air
bites our lips red?
Can you stop to listen
to the trembling aspen,
a shift in season,
the incremental murmur
of snow from the west?
Anne Caldwell, March 2013