Friday, August 24, 2012

The Wait

The Wait




For so long,
hope has been only the
party dress of a woman
naked underneath, but one night
I know you'll find me, take me
off this skewer in the southern heat.
I'll fetch a sizzled sigh when I feel
your hand on mine, warm and dry
as summer peaches, your eyes

browner than husked pecanshells
earthed and softened by rain.
I'll see you again
through the listless curtain breath
where you walk in puddled shadows, a speck
of substance, flesh of my flesh cut on the
blade of the horizon, 
parted from me only by
the last sigh of the day

coming closer.
I'll go to the mirror
remake my face in fewer years
take away the new fear from the eyes,
the acquired acid behind the soldered lips,
run a quick feather over the pain you left too soon to see
before I blow light into my cheeks and wick
the old roundness for you to globe
in the lantern of your kindling palms.


All that's left now
is the wait.

~August 2012



Posted for   Fireblossom Friday    at real toads
Shay asks us to write a love story for the inner movie lover.



Optional Musical Accompaniment:





Image: Sunset over the Haunted Cowyard, © joyannjones

30 comments:

  1. For some reason I began to cry a few lines into the second stanza. That's how real this is.

    I really cannot ask for any more of this day.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Kerry. A lot of tears in the ink here, I'm afraid.

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    2. On my walk home this afternoon down a side street near home, someone had the windows open and was playing electric Neil Young fairly loudly. I didn't recognize the song, but it was similar to this one, which i do know. It made me feel good to hear it. A kindred soul and all.

      I'm honored that you linked this to my challenge, Joy. I'm replying here, under Kerry's and your comments cos this deserves tears, and also, joy at the kind of kick of recognition only a well written poem can bring.

      The speaker remaking herself into a younger, more hopeful self, almost making herself into a light source for her beloved, is stunning. I really admire it because it not only deftly conveys a state of heart that is hard to describe well, but it does so beautifully and without the dreaded gooey cliches.

      This is such a brave little anthem of devotion to someone. I adore it.

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    3. Thanks Shay--no one does sad love better than Neil--this song made the charts for the chorus, I think, but the lyrics to each verse never fail to catch in my throat. I'm so glad you liked this one--you know I always like to do the best I can for your prompt.

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  2. So many great lines throughout like:

    hope has been only the
    party dress of a woman
    naked underneath

    and

    flesh of my flesh cut on the
    blade of the horizon,
    parted from me only by
    the last sigh of the day

    ... I love the ending, too.

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  3. Oh Joy, this is so steeped in longing it is taut with the tension of it. So tender and beautiful - and sad.

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  4. "I know you'll find me, take me
    off this skewer in the southern heat."

    "I'll see you again
    through the listless curtain breath
    where you walk in puddled shadows, a speck
    of substance, flesh of my flesh"


    "I'll go to the mirror
    remake my face in fewer years
    take away the new fear from the eyes,
    the acquired acid tongue behind the soldered lips,
    run a quick feather over the pain you left too soon to see"

    I am a puddle on the floor.

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  5. Reminded me of the Dylan words "I had to rearrange their faces and give them all another name" -- I hope that you aren't offended.
    Nice assemblage of words, as per par.

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    Replies
    1. Not at all--as you can see, that song is on my sidebar right now and may very well have crept into the poem, magpie creature that the mind is. (though not intentionally.)

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  6. A beautiful poem, Joy. I think my favorite lines are : parted from me only by
    the last sigh of the day

    coming closer.

    The break works very effectively (in part because of all the punctuation!)

    But it's a moving gossamer poem, the curtained breath, the puddled shadows - the soldered lips and all the roundness and kindling at the end--just lovely. k.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks k--and again you pick the line I almost cut--'coming closer.' Glad it added to your reading--the punctuation was last minute on this one, and splitting up the lines that way. Sometimes those are the best edits.

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    2. Well, I like the edit. I can see that that type of thing can trip over into the precious but it doesn't here--the weight of the poem being what it is - and there's that touch of ambiguity but breath, catching of breath - the sigh -the fact that it's the end of the day but it's also coming closer is just a wonderful kind of edge, I think==k.

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  7. Wow, this is so gorgeous! I love that first stanza! It really grabs you right off with "hope has been only the
    party dress of a woman
    naked underneath..." Oh heck, I love the second and third stanzas too, and the ending is perfect! This may be one of my favs of yours!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks LM--appreciate the vote of confidence.

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  8. 'the old roundness for you to globe
    in the lantern of your kindling palms'...Loved these to end up with it...

    The wait is long and so is the hope, but as long as we are alive, all those loving things we can do to ourselves and/ but because of another one too.
    Excellent and 'bravo'!

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  9. i got teary as well, right after the line about hope..this has to be one of the most powerful love poems i've read in a very long time. thank you for sharing such beauty, i'll keep it deep in my heart and will return to re-read~

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, yelena--that's a wonderful compliment from someone who writes love poems as beautifully as you do.

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  10. some really beautiful lines...def packed with emotion too hedge...the waiting, maybe for a reurn...the making up of yourself, a little younger preparing for it....

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  11. This is so beautiful...it does bring tears with its longing and hope, however faint, of his return.

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  12. I just lovelove your earthy descriptions Hedge...the emotions and the hope...the wait can be the best or the worst time depending . I really like the direction you took this.

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  13. Beautiful from the very first lines--and wrenching.

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  14. This is so good, strong and to the point with honest emotions. A really moving read.

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  15. I like the details Hedge from the sizzled sigh to the summer peaches to the last sigh of the day ~ Beautiful work ~

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  16. you weave such a spell here, I almost forgot there was still "the wait."

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  17. It's the third stanza that really moved me. Wow, Hedge.

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  18. Yes, I felt the tears welling in my eyes after the first few lines. I felt, intensely, every word of your poem ... a mixture of sadness, regret, hope and promise.

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  19. but one night
    I know you'll find me, take me
    off this skewer in the southern heat.

    Oh, it just seems that the love returned to her is far too fleeting, and yet, she will "remake her face" in hopes he comes again? My heart goes out to her... and makes me furious with "him".

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  20. "hope has been only the
    party dress of a woman" ... This conjures all kinds of imagery---the girl waiting to be picked up (will he come or not?), hopeful that this is the night of new beginnings ... the disappointment that usually arrives instead.

    "I'll fetch a sizzled sigh" ... Love this. :) But if someone takes you off the skewer, although it might seem like you've been saved, you're really about to be eaten---which could be a good or a bad thing.

    "flesh of my flesh cut on the
    blade of the horizon" ... Makes me think of a sacrificial alter (Abraham and Isaac). And also Adam and Eve.

    "remake my face in fewer years" ... I read Shay's comment about this meaning you are making yourself look younger (which makes perfect sense). But women are notorious for taking too long to apply their makeup and get ready to go. So I read this as meaning you will take less time than usual to ready yourself---possibly even rushing, anxious for the arrival of the upcoming event.

    "wick
    the old roundness for you to globe" ... I'm picturing the hands cupped together to hold your face beneath the chin. The use of the word "globe" takes me right out of the poem and into another place of consideration. That your brain can even come up with "globe" as such a verb amazes me.

    "in the lantern of your kindling palms" ... Gosh, you are being prepared for sacrifice. This person is destroying you, but you don't ask it to stop. In fact, you are preparing yourself to be beautiful when slaughtered. I just hope there is pleasurable pain in this and not just pain.

    This makes me think of the song "Killing Me Softly." Only, it really isn't that soft, is it?

    Incredible work, Joy Ann. Thank you for sharing it, especially when it sounds like it was painful to write.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Shawna. It's not very painful, actually, to let go when you know the best is behind you--it's the waiting that hurts.

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  21. Sometimes the wait is what makes it all worth it in the end.....intense and beautiful writing Hedge! :-)

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