Monday, January 24, 2011

Fever Dream

 Fever Dream

So many nights I go to bed alone
still thinking what I dream is what is real,
your name a vesper on my lips of stone.

The past is just a rind that I have thrown
beneath the churn of time’s unknowing wheel
that grinds the nights here as I sleep alone.

I hear your voice, a whisper made of bone.
I feel ghost arms that shut like traps of steel,
and pray for respite with my lips of stone

to ears made deaf, from which all care has flown,
that heed no word of mine, that will not feel
the burden of these nights I sleep alone.

I send my mind to sail on the unknown,
where fever dreams float ships that dip and reel,
and every seasick night I sleep alone.

The journey that I make can’t end in home
when nothing seen nor felt is ever real.
Yet still each night I go to bed alone
your name a vesper on my lips of stone.

January 2011

 posted at OneStopPoetry, Monday Poetry Form, Villanelle

Image : Golden Galleon by Jacques Moitoret


  1. I like the subtle changes in the 1 and 2 lines! Yaaay! We did well didn't we lol I have to laugh when I read last weeks now I'm kinda glad I left it up there to show progression. This is lovely sweetie! xx

  2. My favorite phrase in this is "a whisper made of bone,"

    This is softly stark, and builds slowly, almost imperceptibly, until it leaves one breathless. Rather the same description could be made of a restless night.

    I never tire of reading what you create, dear Witch.

  3. This is incredibly beautiful and haunting. The repetition of the core lines is very effective and weaves it all, like a spell or incantation. I especially love the "lips of stone", the "whisper made of bone", the rind beneath the unknowing wheel, the "fever dreams" that "float ships"............such extremely wonderful writing.

  4. Mmmm...This is beautiful, Hedgewitch! I love the metaphor of sea sickness for insomnia/love sickness. And your images are lovely and haunting. I also love how they slowly build to your last stanza, which gives me shivers. You did a fine job with this form!

  5. Great job on this villanelle Hedgewitch...and pulling the dream fever throughout each stanza....I have to give myself sometime with this has not set in my mind as of yet....bkm

  6. Yumm, it feels really good when I read this line "your name a vesper on my lips of stone"


  7. "your name a vesper on my lips of stone" - just love that, hedgewitch. As if the weight of words would be too much to pass.

    The rhythm and the flow - just wonderful. A joy to read.

  8. The set is technically correct. Grammatically I see a couple of places that inhibit the poetic flow, yet I am not prone to count the meter or feet so I guess it fits the form. For example.

    "The journey that I make can’t end in home"

    Why IN and not AT?

    Couple of other small pilpul that would amount to nothing more than the splitting of hairs.

    As a lament I like the piece, the two way loss evinced by lines like:

    I go to bed alone

    to ears made deaf, from which all care has flown

    your name a vesper on my lips of stone

    In its entirety it speaks volumes to the evolution of a relationship regretted both in having given up on it and the longing to renew it. But this could also be read as not something between two lovers but almost any relationship. It does have a universal appeal. Think people and government, parent and child, job and time in it. Yes as a lament I do see tremendous value here.

  9. Well crafted - I love that vesper line,as well.

  10. I would like to feature this poem in December on my Poetic License series. Once a month I post great poetry that I find by searching blogs such as yours. If you allow me to use your poem, you will get full credit and a link back to your site.

    Three times a year I will also be combining the previous four months into one large magazine style post. If you don’t mind please let me know. If you would like to see an example, the first magazine issue of the last trimester of 2010 was posted on January 6th ( with the poems from Sept-Dec of 2010.

    Here is the link to the January Poetic License ( if you would like to see it before you decide. Thank you for your consideration, regardless of your decision.

  11. Thank you, Tom. You are more than welcome to repost the poem with attribution. You have a very nice-looking site and I appreciate your interest. I also left a comment at your place to the same effect.


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats

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