in their dying, in their shadows.

In their dying

in their shadows

I will see your eyes.

As the blood-flow

            of living things,

dear white shells and white bone

fall into the ground,

mama’s bony fingers

            whiten the earth,

                                    where all else fades and leaves; daddy glissades in the ice

            picking flowers for us all, and soon they fade

and all summer

death around ankles

they are fish in the sea;

eyes, beckoned

            reminiscent of dissociation

of the sea,

            the twisted dawn blinds the dark tree,

over the hymns

the excessive slice

            by the autumnal strings,

and cow bones; death in different songs,

such as mine,

evolving fragmentary

and redden rots in the ground,

            the stones are pale without the sun

your face

is my own,

            your eyes are not mine

we bleed

            our paths

writhed in the tulips,

and their freedom

            to the early sea.

© 2020 All Rights Reserved.

Reposted for OLN at dVerse.

This poem, at least by stanzas five to the end, was inspired by Sketches of Spain by Buckethead. I never generally divulge the meaning of my poetry, but I feel compelled to with this little piece–rather, a strange feeling I admit. From the instrumental, it brought me evocations of grief, of loss. I also thought briefly back to the opera by Henry Purcell, Dido’s Lament, where that alone was about grief and remembering one as they are before death and not their fate to be.

From stanzas five to the end, I explicate these feelings of connection and disconnection to the concept of death among us as living things. Flowers eventually wither and die once picked off the bush; I remember a pink carnation I picked for my mother as a child if I recall correctly. The flower died days later.

Memories alone are concepts, fragments of inspiration for me. I delve into the nature of ourselves, the antithetical layers we have of one another. We make or forge our own path, so we go this way, our own way.

Like in Dido’s Lament, remember me as I was, not my fate to be. I hope that was one of the themes I could communicate in this poem.

I dearly hope you enjoyed the read. Thank you.

67 thoughts on “in their dying, in their shadows.”

  1. It really hits with a pang. Really emotional. The alignment seems to uplift the poem really well. I mean reading it the way it was arranged really brought out the feelings of wandering around thoughts, recollecting them and maybe trying to forget them too. I’m sure if that was your intention, but the work truly delivers what it is to have touched the doors of grief. I hope you are doing well. Peace and greetings 💛

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Shanyu. I am doing well and I hope you are too. 🙂

      I’m so appreciative of your analysis and feedback. It’s such a delight to read. Thank you, thank you so much.

      Sending peace back. ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My absolute pleasure. I’m doing well, yes.
        I was not sure if my analysis meant what you wanted to convey considering how a poem can mean so many things to so many people, but I am glad to have read the Poem.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Maybe I’m the only idiot here, but I didn’t understand the two lines ” The twisted dawn blinds the dark tree, over the hymns”. For some reason(and I may be wrong) I think they’re connected. Could you explain them please?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. No, no, no, you’re not an idiot at all!

      Poetry is subjective and it’s variant. What I mean in those lines is purely imagery of the day in its transition. I love using the words “dark tree” and I’m sure that it also appears in some other poems of mine. Someone could probably make a drinking game out of it. Hahaha.

      But, yes, I use nature to further delve into the setting of the poem. Now hymns can refer to anything, and it depends on how you see it fit into the poem. It can be spiritual or religious, or it cannot be. It goes either way, but in that line (and in general), I use “hymn” as a sort of song to hear that evokes a physicality to the imagery, a type of music rather, not as a praise to God.

      The lines I write in general are streams of consciousness and inspirations from other literature I’ve read that had a great effect on me.

      I appreciate your feedback so much. I thank you dearly for the kind comment and question. I am always so happy to explain my poetry, since objectively, it can be hazy in some (most) of my lines.

      Thank you again. ❤ ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I read your comment here and the verse. Your kind like on my post today was so fast that I wondered if you have read it. I understand that we sometimes do so. Usually a like means you liked the published article. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did happen to read it. 🙂 Your philosophy discussion is intriguing, if not enlightening. Very enjoyable post.

      At times, I like posts from the first few lines so I can go back and read them later to give them the proper read they deserve.


      1. I understand. If you had read before like: you have a good reading speed in my estimation. If you read it later: thanks for the explanation. It lead to this discussion here. Thanks for the kind words and discussion. Have a nice day ahead!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. How can l express my feelings about your poem, miss Lucy.
    It really touched my heart.
    Very emotional and touching.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The repetition of eyes is interesting in this poem, Lucy, bring to mind the saying that the eyes are the window to the soul, and I wonder if they are somebody else’s eyes you are writing about or your own, as you seem to have opened your soul in this poem. I like the balance of life and death and the juxtaposition of ‘the blood-flow / of living things’ and the ‘dear white shells and white bone’. My favourite lines:
    ‘ the twisted dawn blinds the dark tree,
    over the hymns
    the excessive slice
    by the autumnal strings’.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great analysis, Kim. I’ve kind of opened my soul in this poem, you’re very right about that. 🙂 Thank you again for your kind words and support. It means a lot.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. An excellent poem to present to us on OLN; lovely SOC word-smithing. Kim nailed my favorite lines. I’m so glad you’ve joined us at d’Verse. I look forward to reading you, it’s like riding an unbroken mustang across an alien landscape, like being cajoled and jolted by its uniqueness.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Glenn, that means so much to me. I’m very happy you enjoy my work. I really enjoy yours as well; your writing style is very remarkable and distinctive. Thank you again for the support and feedback. You’re too kind.


  7. Lucy, after my mom’s hospitalization over the weekend, then connecting with 4 siblings after a long disconnect, so many emotions, triggers, time-jumps, etc, along with their bleached bones, have been dredged up! Your poem fits some of the jumbled up, unexpressed mess that’s muddying the water right now. I truly appreciate your afterword.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh my this is so intriguing. For me, it makes me think of seeing and losing a piece of myself through the loss of a parent. So many lines and phrases to savor here but I especially like “death in different songs”.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I admire your notes and writing process to just put it out there, capturing moments and fragments of your inspiration.
    Death is a common theme I am now familiar with your writing. For this poem, I love the use of eyes and in metaphorically too such as this: your eyes are not mine.
    Amazing write Lucy. Have a good weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Marvellous stuff Lucy, – thanks for the explanation too. Amongst all the sparkling imagery I really liked (for some reason) mother’s bony fingers whitening the earth while daddy ” glissades over the ice picking flowers for us all”. Thanks also for Buckethead’s take on Spain – that long distorted echo down the halls of the Alhambra. Evocative and lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Heart-rending, especially for me these lines: “and all summer/death around ankles/they are fish in the sea” – a brilliant image of loss unconfined and irrecoverable through grief.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Your face is my own…. but your eyes are not mine…. I love this anthesis you spoke of in your notes.
    I love this imagery…. death around ankles they are fish in the sea;
    Your notes were very helpful… Thanks for your interpretation of your poem.
    Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

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