Saturday, June 21, 2014

After The Fever








After The Fever



The south wind knows I'm not the same
since the fever, re-shaped
from smoke, flower-dust and partings,
lust drowned, all melt and gape;
never
been as strong, forever
starting
at sounds inside the wall
a clatter fox-foot quick that came
when things began to fall.

The east wind knows I've never had
any man who turned me 
in his hand like the fever, but
the breath that burned me
leaving,
how it came out cleaving,
so cut
the mind  to clarity,
so scoured clean both good and bad--
that is a parity.


~June 2014





posted for     real toads





Play It Again Challenge
Kerry unearths three excellent former Toads memes for us to play with this weekend., a revisit of one of Izy's photo prompts, a particularly excellent Fireblossom Friday, and, for me the one impossible to resist: one of her superlative form challenges, the Robert Herrick Stanza. As always,Kerry, this was a challenge in every sense.






Photo: Eyelid to Eye, copyright joyannjones 2012-2014



28 comments:

  1. I feel lucky to be first in line! This is a composition of words on what it means to walk through fire that demands to be kept around and periodically revisited.

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  2. Hey joy-- beautiful lyric stanzas-- the idea of the breath that burned me leaving seemed a lynch pin here. And the fever that seems as much emotional as physical-- I am on phone so can't comment very well but there is a definite Herrick quality-- the rose buds no longer maying. A great poem of regret and maybe exhaustion with some of the disillusions of passion and the body. Thanks. K.

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    1. Interesting that it is after the fever, not after the fall, though the fall there too. K .

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    2. I already wrote one called After the Fall. ;_) Also--syllable count--but also a Poe line('the fever called living ..') That burning line was a last minute re-write, k--glad you liked it. Thanks for fighting blogger on your i-phone to get a word in.

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  3. never had a man turn me in his hand like a fever...ha...and the breath that burned me..that whole section make this for me joy....also the good and bad of the scouring....

    sorry i am pretty wore out...just got home from 5 hours of family laser tag...i could go to sleep now...ha

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  4. Its a beautifully composed poem, perfect form, great words... Oh! and the emotions involved!! i am speechless!!

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  5. You do such a masterful job with the form here, Joy. It's just a pleasure to read and read over again, just to get the sound of it, the roll of it. To me, this is a cousin to your previous poem, both of them dealing to some degree with ambivalence and duality.

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  6. I'm in agreement with Shay, the work you did with the form is beautiful and I also read it several times.

    For me, the personification of the wind of the South and East, "knowing," that appeals to my poetic heart greatly.

    The entirety is so well done, Hedge. Thank you!

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  7. That is beautifully done. Really nice.

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  8. I love how you have used those short lines as a sharp sword cutting the lines into twists of the winding of the thoughts - excellently performed to the form.

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  9. "so scoured clean both good and bad--" the line appeals to me most...

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  10. I always admire your ability to master forms...I like the metaphor, too. Not so sure there is ever any immunity to this "fever." Fortunately, you still have a compass full of winds to use. Very nice work.
    Steve

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  11. What I like most about the form is that it has the feel of free verse held in check by the rhymes and syllable count. Here, it provides the perfect frame for your theme and you have given us a delicious assortment of words to savour. Your development of the post-fever syndrome in the second stanza is exceptional. I also loved the line that Brian has pointed out and the sense of being purged and purified by fire at the end leaves me quite breathless.

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    1. Thank you Kerry--a difficult form for me to get the cadence, but once I fumbled my way reasonably close to it, liked it a lot.

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  12. interesting! "cleaving," i feel like that's your word. am i making this up, that it's a word you favor? a good one for sure.

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    1. I think it's a Viking thing. ;_) Thanks Marian.

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  13. Brilliant use of the form...I am so in awe of your ability to use rhyme without having it feel like the piece was driven by it. Love how you personified the wind...Beautiful

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    1. Thank you Susie--yours was exceptional,--melancholy but clear and soft.

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  14. I love the "fox-foot quick", your work with the form is exceptional and your closing lines are a wonder. Wowzers!

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  15. Love what the winds know of fever! The South knowing the new strength: "re-shaped
    from smoke, flower-dust and partings,
    lust drowned, all melt and gape. . . " and the East knowing that no man could do that, that instead men were about leaving and cleaving and ... Parity? Love the recovery that gives such an afterthought. This poem is exquisitely calm, after all that happens. Thank you.

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  16. Ta-dah! I love how you did this~ I too love the rhyming, but how it is subtle. We are so enchanted by the words-it seems effortless-but I know it is not~ What a gift you have~

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  17. Nice Herrickean yadda yadda to the unfolding of the skein. Somehow on first reading I sensed a strange disconnect between the first and second halves of each stanza, some breaking of the traditional; though going back over it a second time everything seems in in place. Pardon my hoodoo reading, I follow this from "Octaves Under a Full Moon," coming back from the banefire that balmed, whatever that sorcery or shaman-song might have been: That healing is not so much a restoration of the good as a "scouring clean" the balance. There's an AA prayer to give one's higher power both the bad AND the good, all of it, a total surrender--for, perhaps, in reflection, what do we know what is our best and worst? I never got anywhere good by flying, though it sure was more fun ... Anyhow, convalesce well in the verses, abetted by herbal tea, moonlight and Van Morrison.

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    1. Yes, it's an odd gallop, this form. The cadence is hard to grasp, and I'm not sure I totally did--it's very pronounced in Herrick's work, the drumbeat, but here, not so much. Have you ever read Twain's Letters from the Earth? It's a cynic's eye on the workings of religion(not especially faith--but the nuts and bolts of dogma) and The Way Things Are--anyway, you reminded me of it with your idea that we quite possibly can have no notion of what is *really* our good or bad, weakness or strength, in how it impacts both ourselves and others; truly another phrasing of your patron's epiphanic words"The way you think it is, its not that way at all.". AFA not getting anywhere good by flying, do you think you'd have ever landed where you are now without those demon's wings? ;_) Thanks for reading, B.

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  18. I'm out and about, tentatively foraging, and here you prepare a feast. Well's been dry (I know you know how that feels.) ~

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    1. O I do, indeed. What I've read of yours lately though has been well worth waiting for--things sometimes are more...concentrated, maybe, when they do come. Thanks for scrolling down the page and reading all the assorted scribbles, M. All I have to show for the month of June, but something, I guess.

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  19. Thanks much for beautiful O'Keefe link. I am not always such a fan of hers, but that is right up my alley! Both real and figurative. You did TWO stanzas--so smoothly and meaningfully--I am thinking that the form would work better for me if I combined some lines, and then broke them up again--though, of course, I didn't do that. k.

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    1. Yes, I remember being very surprised to come upon that painting when I was at the Georgia O'Keefe Museum in Sante Fe--like a lost orphan amidst all the cow pelvises and excessively female flowers. She did spend some time in New York painting, though and the skyscrapers have an organic sort of feel--so glad you liked it. The line breaks are very hard in this form--as always I started from free verse with a completely different rhyme scheme and it literally turned the poem inside out--still, some poems benefit from that. I thought yours was exceptionally good, both form- and content-wise, k.

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