Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Pixie


The Pixie


On the mound she danced in the 
moon's music turning; 
she spoke to the poor soul
lost in the gloom:

Come put lady slippers on my flying feet
fit my fringe of fingers in foxglove bells.
Skirt me with the trumpet of a
a honeysuckle bud and for a hat,
the fresh green acorn shell 
to cover and cradle my pale wee head.

See the blue lines designing my skin
that tie me tight to the lost limestone leys,
let your eyes wander their knotted tattoo. 
Get you drunk on the dew that pearls on the web
my cunning sister weaves for
the broodlings that gnaw in her womb.

Maylight shows a woman's face, moonlight a thing more cruel. 
Wind your white fingers down my slim stem 
and see which might be real.
Beneath the furled fiddlehead, feel the skull smile.
Beneath petal flesh, a hollow bone, beneath sudden stardrops
see the red, beneath the barefoot dance feel cold stained stone.

Come close love and put the lady slippers round
my quick curving toes till the moon won't spark, 
watch me dance all night, come watch, come bleed 
on the grey still mound while the weavers feed.



June 2012



Posted for   real toads
Sunday Challenge:Photography of Hannah Gosselin


Audio:






Process Note:Hannah's beautiful photographs of these woodland plants seem very fairylike to me, and inspired me to go back to take another look at an earlier piece, called Under the Purple Leaf.
 This poem is its sequel.



Both photos © Hannah Gosselin
Used with permission.

21 comments:

  1. So ethereal, so dancing the words, so softly haunting a soothing voice. I am taken by it all.

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  2. One cannot fail to understand how our ancestors in the old country were able to believe in the wee folk when you look at these pictures. You write so knowledgeably of the lore, and the slightly dangerous edge to meddling with the fairies is subtly played. I agree that your voice adds a haunting quality to the whole.

    The second last stanza in its entirety is my favourite, and I also loved the image of the broodlings gnawing in the womb.

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  3. wonderfully descriptive hedge....i like how you blend the person and the plants in a bit of magic...

    Maylight shows a woman's face, moonlight a thing more cruel.
    Wind your white fingers down my slim stem
    and see which might be real...is a great couple lines....the dance between or risk in what you get if you dare...tantalizing...made me smile...

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  4. This begins gently, as if it might be a simple ode to woodland sprites or nature, but then when the sister enters with her broodlings, things turn dark. The shift is as sudden as the season or the weather, and what is left is not what the reader began with. The writing is gorgeous, by the way. What a pleasure to hear this read aloud by the poetess. It's almost not right, how you cloak such dark musings in such beautiful language. *Almost*.

    I especially liked the maylight/moonlight line. You're a master at this kind of poem, and I love to go back and re-read, to try to see how you did it, but I never quite can. The formula is as elusive as the true nature of the speaker in your poem.

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  5. I would be "the poor soul / lost in the gloom" easily led astray once hypnotized by this Pixie's song, dance, and participatory costume. Your voice adds steady pace and seductive softness. Pixie makes me think of "pixilated" and from there it is a short step to "pixels" so that if I was the type to drift on associations (smile), I would be bleeding on a virtual level rather than on the altar of fate.

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  6. Fabulously done, in both meanings of the word. You have, indeed, as Kerry suggested, described the world as seen by our ancient ancestors. Who could fail to see the wee folk in photos such as these? Hurrah to Hannah for capturing them, and to you for describing them and their world. Perfectly done.
    K

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  7. I like listening to your read Hedge, the words come alive with your voice ~ The images in stanza 2 and 3 are specially stunning ~

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  8. What else would a pixie use for a hat, I wonder? Loved this, hedgewitch. I'm sure the pixies and the fairies would be delighted to be anyone's companion who could see them dance.

    I haven't seen a ladyslipper since I was on Prince Edward Island.

    Your voice, so soft and gentle, took the poem to a whole different place.

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  9. Love the maylight/moonlight contrast and:

    See the blue lines designing my skin
    that tie me tight to the lost limestone leys,
    let your eyes wander their knotted tattoo.
    Get you drunk on the dew that pearls on the web
    my cunning sister weaves for
    the broodlings that gnaw in her womb

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  10. Oh MY!! Hedge!!! What a treasure to behold this poem alone and then the surprise and gift of hearing it in your own voice (which is SUCH a beautiful poetry reading voice I must add)!

    I really like where you went with this, it is so very befitting of the image. Such a visual poem...I love the details of the attire of the pixie and the dark twist that happens with the gnawing sister's womb...I think my favorite is the closing stanza though!

    What an honor...thank you, Hedge!! :)

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    Replies
    1. You're most welcome, Hannah--thanks for the inspiration--it's not often I can write this easily to a prompt, and I loved your photos.

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  11. Hoooohaaahhhhhhhh!!!! Oh how cool to hear you read this. I so love it. It always so cool to put voice with verse. And Holy hell, that was a great poem, for a great picture. I felt like we were all crouched around the fire listening raptly as you spun your tale.....yup....crazy good.

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  12. I love this...such beautiful fantasy and to hear you read it fantastic!!

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  13. are there any wild orchids smaller than the lady slipper?

    well done, all round :)

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  14. Your poems sparkle on the page, but blaze with new light when you read them. Another great post.

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  15. Lovely, lyrical, my favorite stanza:

    Maylight shows a woman's face, moonlight a thing more cruel.
    Wind your white fingers down my slim stem
    and see which might be real.
    Beneath the furled fiddlehead, feel the skull smile.
    Beneath petal flesh, a hollow bone, beneath sudden stardrops
    see the red, beneath the barefoot dance feel cold stained stone.

    I dont' have the liberty to listen at the moment, but look forward to it. k.

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  16. How delightful this is. At first I was thinking of a Jack in the Pulpit. I was terrified of them at about two years of age. I quickly realized we had something else, something delightful here.

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  17. I especially like the word bump here:
    "Come put lady slippers on my flying feet
    fit my fringe of fingers in foxglove bells."
    Gorgeous alliteration, and a stunning visual. And what an invitation!

    de
    whimsygizmo.wordpress.com

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  18. It started out so sweet and by the time I realized it wasn't I was already entangled. Great read!

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  19. Drift in the draft of the sweet breeze laden with honeysuckle.

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  20. I adore the menacing turn this takes!

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg