Thursday, December 8, 2011

Midnight Riff

Moonrise by George Inness 1887

Midnight Riff

Low low in the midnight
come to dance by the firelight
tune up with that arbitrary grace
substitute sway for that look on your face
in a dark that makes shadow look bright.

Row row over tears
the  reedy boat of sprung years
when the shore disappears into mist
that insists you persist don’t resist 
a distance flung further than fears.

Sole sole is the pathway
burnt bulbs outline the runway
where something much heavier than air
fades away with what made you care;
that departure clocks in the next day.

December 2011

Get back to Gay Cannon's FormForAll  at dVerse on Ballads Carols and Lullabyes here

Image: Moonrise, by George Inness oil on canvas, 1887
By George Inness (Yale University Art Gallery [1]) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
apologies to his shade for my liberties with it in the footer...


  1. The sound of this poem read aloud conjures up the scene you paint with your words. It transported me off the shore into the mist of this place. It's magic.

  2. :) Into the night within us. Gotta love the Inness and your poetry.

  3. nice hedge...the repitition in the opening lines gives this a bit of a sing song to it but also hakes it just a bit haunting...i agree with grandmother actually it is the sound in this that is really enchanting...

  4. The subject matter of this poem is offered with subdued light, but the mastery of the verse itself should not be over-looked: the rhymes, assonance and alliteration all add wonderful sound qualities to the whole. Another excellent piece from your pen, Joy.

  5. Wow. The mood you create with this is so thick you could cut it with a knife. "Burnt bulbs outline the runway" is an amazing image.

  6. Beautiful verse, Joy! I could detect the buoyant feeling in the darkness when reading it.


  7. Such a somber and reflective painting. Your words add whole other layers, hedgewitch.

  8. A lovely lilting song, rocking like a boat or cradle. A charm to to put a smile back on the Man in the Moon. 'Tis elven. - Brendan

  9. Thanks all. I'm looking for something here--I'm not sure that the two versions of the Innis pic--the bottom one my manip--don't say it better than my song--but in the end it's only a song, sung by the fire, and one of my own little incantations.

    @Kerry: Thanks--it was elusive, so I pinned it into some devices. ;_)

    @B: A little elven bread instead of hardtack on this voyage? Sounds good.

  10. I'm in love with that final stanza. Every word.

  11. love this. the pic you put with it, especially the one in blue, really went well with this... .

    I loved the repetition in the first lines, and the line, "substitute sway for that look on your face"...

    Conjures up feelings of the desire to escape... let go... as only possible sometimes with the help of music... and the dark..

  12. Oh, I do love how this rolls off my tongue... especially the second stanza!

  13. Absolute joy to read, my Friday office share! :) Loved it!

  14. This is lovely, Joy. I actually like the second stanza best--the sprung reedy boat, Or sprung years, all the internal rhymes. Really lovely. I actually think that stanza works on its own--though doesn't need to. K.

  15. I'm not sure why, hedge, but this struck a chord of familiarity within me...a bit of mystery, a bit of wistfulness. I agree that the repetition give is a songlike quality.

  16. Love that title. And that last line tied up the somber mood very well...

  17. i like how you use rhymen in this

    it would be nice to hear you read it

  18. What a New Year's poem! I feel it was written for me because it gives words to the feelings I'm going through just now. Sole, sole indeed for as the clocks seem to be ticking down to stop around here I realize each of us has his/her own and the sounds of one meld with the other and the echoes and memories when one stops is all that remain.
    Thank you and forgive how little I engage these days. I love you, you know.


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

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