Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Crows



Crow Taking Flight With Frozen Treetops




Crows



The  crows come down
from their high spy tower,
a gypsy synchronicity of black

but they tell me nothing
any more, beaks macerating silence,
eyes shiny blank as linoleum;
no answers, only sharp corvine curses,

cracks as they pry the suet butterfly
from her metal corset
and convene in iron symmetry
a privacy of devouring.

It's plain that I'm not Odin
though I've given more than my eye,
that the gossip of the green world
passes me by, the old feed of

voices an ejaculation of clouds,
alabaster riddles in indigo night
while I dream white dreams
in the periwinkles,

forgotten as Sleipnir's name
wondering if ragnarök
is still to come, or already
gathered up in the trees.

~December 2012


 Optional Musical Accompaniment






Posted for   real toads
Challenge:An Ink-Stained Wordlist
I had a lot of help with this one, first from Kerry's list of favorite toad words at the link above, then from the speaking photography of my friend Petteri Sulonen, whose picture, Crow Taking Flight with Frozen Treetops is at the header. 


Process notes: In Norse mythology, Odin possessed two ravens, Huginn and Muninn(Thought and Memory) who flew the world and brought him back its news. He also had a magical eight-legged horse named Sleipnir whom he rode between the worlds. Odin gave his eye under the world tree to learn the wisdom of the Frost Giants. You can click the tags 'odin' or 'Huginn and Mugin' below for more poems about these symbols.


Thanks, as always, Petteri, for the inspiration.

24 comments:

  1. WOW. I think it is lurking and ready. I do not usually think of it, but it flew into my mind with your crows, and I will not easily forget it now! The Norse mythology is so bleak! But it does give strength to the living.

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  2. This is just brilliant, Hedge. Such an original use of the word list, with a few of your own favourites thrown in, like macerating, corvine and ragnarok.
    I loved the whole setting, the nod to Norse mythology which always seems so apt at this time of year. My favourite lines are hard to pin down, but these leapt out at me:

    It's plain that I'm not Odin
    though I've given more than my eye,
    that the gossip of the green world
    passes me by...

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  3. excellent! and the money phrase = "a privacy in devouring" yowza!

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  4. My Mother got me a sweater in Lillehammer. So authentic. There's life in it. The Nordys rock. Maybe ragnaroks come and go. We find our own Yggdrasil. I'm waiting it out with Skadi. Thanks for the trip and tunes.

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    Replies
    1. My pleasure--sometimes the tunes just want to go with the poem. Thanks Scott--as I said at your place, sometimes we are our history--I'm second generation Swede and it definitely has a pull for me, all these symbols. I can see you biking alongside the skiing goddess very easily.

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  5. Wonderful, from the icily beautiful photo right through the poem, which unfurled like an old Norse tale. "A privacy of devouring" - yes, the "money phrase"! Beautiful, Hedge.

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  6. Hi Joy, so many strong phrases and images here; probably first two stanzas have strongest images for me simply because they are such absolutely vivid descriptions - gypsy synchronicity of black

    but they tell me nothing
    any more, beaks macerating silence,
    eyes shiny blank as linoleum;
    no answers, only sharp corvine curses -

    but the later more mythological stanzas also wonder-ful. I looked up ragnarok - which you certainly give us a strong feeling of even if one is not familiar with the term. k.

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    Replies
    1. Crows such a strong word--definitely a sense of crowing over, and my mind goes to crone too - but that's just self-reflection. k.

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    2. Thanks, k. I don;t do word list poems much--I always feel like I'm cheating, but sometimes they do lead one on into an unexpected place.

      The days before ragnarök are supposed to be almost more evil than the final confrontation itself:
      "—an axe age, a sword age
      —shields are riven—
      a wind age, a wolf age—
      before the world goes headlong.

      No man will have
      mercy on another."
      ~from Völuspá (Prophecy of the Seeress) the Poetic Edda,
      trans Ursula Dronke

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  7. wow...some great phrasing in this hedge...the privacy of devouring...the suet butterfly and iron corset...nice contrast in that...the ejaculation of clouds....the elements of mythology play really well in this too...great verse...

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  8. alabaster riddles in indigo night

    the butterfly and iron corset truly delighted me! The photo left me breathless.

    I will be sure to cast a wary eye on any black crows I see - I often hear their call, but can't find them in the trees.

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  9. Loved the gossip of the green world.
    Love the photo and your lesson of odin.
    Hard to imagine crows saying nothing. Perhaps the fault lies in the listening.
    Another beautiful piece, hedge

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    1. Thanks, rick. The crow-cursing is still audible--they do that a lot, but not the mysteries. At least some days. Your last was excellent, btw.

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  10. This is beautiful. It's easy to see how you found inspiration in the photo, Joy, but you are the consummate poet...I believe you could write in a place of complete sensory deprivation.
    K

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  11. "gypsy synchronicity of black"--love that phrase SO much. The rest of the poem is magnificent as well :)

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  12. Yes!! Love this...all the way from your image choice to your last expressed word...so well constructed...unique read indeed!

    This is my ab-fave though:

    "only sharp corvine curses,

    cracks as they pry the suet butterfly
    from her metal corset
    and convene in iron symmetry
    a privacy of devouring."

    Such a cool image, Hedge!!
    Those and I loved the alabaster....

    This:

    "alabaster riddles in indigo night"

    Awesomeness.

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  13. Mythology fascinates me ... as does your poem.

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  14. My goodness, this is incredible. What a pleasure to read for all my senses.

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  15. "cracks as they pry the suet butterfly from her metal corset" Love that line...You have taken us on a raven's flight of mythology...beautiful.

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  16. One of my favorite songs to go with; maybe it is one of everybody's favorite songs. The poem's third stanza is my favorite--a suet butterfly to be worried at! That's poetic imagery. In its metal corset, no less.

    And then that sharp ending...Ragnarok gathered in the trees. You've posed it as a question, but perhaps it is only a rhetorical one. Fine work with the list and in your use of Norse mythology, Hedge.

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  17. This is wonderful... I have a bit of a thing for crows, and the tale you weave here is fabulous.

    love these lines:
    eyes shiny blank as linoleum;
    no answers, only sharp corvine curses,

    cracks as they pry the suet butterfly
    from her metal corset

    love!

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  18. cracks as they pry the suet butterfly
    from her metal corset
    and convene in iron symmetry
    a privacy of devouring.

    i could re-read this till the crows come home . . .

    it goes without saying, crows are the top dog of all birds:
    as smart as apes: some say . . .

    voices an ejaculation of clouds,
    alabaster riddles in indigo night
    while I dream white dreams
    in the periwinkles,

    but very few
    could say it
    half as well
    as you do.

    great to hear
    that tune
    too.

    (i seem to have caught Pats tick:)

    cheers hedge


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  19. hedgewitch: Oh, my. What a gorgeous, gorgeous spill of works. Wow.
    I especially LOVE:
    "a gypsy synchronicity of black"
    and
    "a privacy of devouring."

    AWESOME.

    de
    whimsygizmo.wordpress.com

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  20. I'venever liked crows and you've really captured why, well done

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