Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Lost And Found

Lost And Found

A slight shift, a fracture
a quiver in the focus;
things get lost beyond finding.
In their place? Only memory,
that varnish of hearsay, sealing of wish, 
where fact turns to fiction, pain into history
in the shift, in the break.

One night while you talked
I fell through that thinning,
pushed into the unthreading
by the North on your wind.
I landed hard on a dodo's beak,
snapped a pterodactyl wing-bone 
there in the big box of everything lost.

I found ten thousand ghosts
and the almost-necessities long since replaced;
torn concert t-shirts, sophomore copies of Eliot,
left-behind keys, flaking champagne corks, half-dead double A's;
I ate for my dinner plates of unuttered praise,
and the laughter of children, made before they aged.
Ankle deep in old phone numbers, 
unsaid endearments, 
I searched in vain for the footmates to
singular socks, wore them as they were
with only one blue slipper,  
for the forgotten dance step, that last step
where no one had to watch out.

A slight shift, a crack and
I'm here now, with these friends,
my colleagues in flotsam,
in the place where you lost me;
music drifts the dancers
down comes the kiss  
left in your old coat pocket, the last match 

and the wick
for the lamp in the heart;
In this lost light, this lovelight,
it's impossible to be lonely
when the crowd swells
every day.

~April 2015

posted for 

With apologies for the length of this piece--sometimes they just keep coming.

"It Hurts But It Doesn't Harm"
On the eighth day of this month of poetry, the intricate mind of Magaly Guerrero asks us to 
"Weave a poem that explores the difference between hurt and harm"

I will be out of pocket for much of today (April 8) but will be back to return visits as soon as I can.

Images: Board of Demented Associations, c. 1931, by Salvidor Dali
The Ladies at Bonheur, by Remedios Varo
Fair Use via


  1. Oh WOW....that was all senses lol Every word a treasure. I wold be thrilled to be counted as one of your"colleagues in flotsam" :D XXX

  2. You set up an interesting and beautiful scene. Also, everybody is finding nice art. I like both pictures that you chose to go with this post. :-)

  3. Hey Joy, a new favorite here--so many beautiful lines, that yes, keep coming--and so many images and sentiments that a reader can identify with--joining that swell--I think of what you wrote to Kerry, and this is another sort of "list" poem, but like hers--not hardly--

    I love the humor here, the sly self-deprecating wit, which is also very human and real and part of what feels genuinely lost--that feeling of ending up with the dinosaurs and dodos all too real, but you address loss rather compassionately--at the end the poem becomes very soft, rather like the swell of a wave--as well as of the crowd--and I especially love the colleagues in flotsam and the kiss in the pocket and lamp and wick of the heart. Really lovely, and honestly, does not seem such a terrible place to end up the way you describe it, which I believe is the found aspect of the poem. Thanks much.

  4. It is sad that people, too, get thrown away, displaced. Your descriptions, the items you listed, make you really aware of the worth that is put on things...and people.

  5. You and Kerry have done me in, today... In the best of ways, of course; for I believe that words that make me feel everything they mean, that leave me gasping for breath and for the reality of my own moment in time, are such a gift. I feel with your speaker, found things that weren't mine, ate laughter that made me cry... and for the duration of this poem, I held her hand. I suspect she will stay in my mind, long after...

  6. The ache of nostalgia is very vivid in this piece. Old ghosts can hurt, but their power to harm fades over time.

  7. I found this poem so absolutely lyrical and beautiful. I love how you incorporated part of the first stanza into a later one as you got deeper into the poem.

  8. This made me smile with that tiny tinge of sadness... and I think I want to live in this place.

  9. Thanks everyone--so glad you all were able to work your way through this long a poem during this month of so many many poems to read--I truly appreciate it and will be by to read and visit as soon as I can--big storms coming in, so I will be offline tonight, but hopefully back tomorrow.

  10. You've described beautifully the prescribed difference, Hedge. Forgive the brief comment; but I wanted you to know I'd been here and loved the poem.

  11. That's a really intriguing poem. It seems to be swelling up for an ending much less warm than the one you gave it and so it comes as a relief.

    Noticed you've read 'Cascando'. That's a nice one.

  12. I love this!!!! I draw parallels.

  13. I'm always surprised by your language, how you find another turn that I didn't know was there, as in this line:

    I fell through that thinning,

    and it makes all the difference ~

  14. Jesus Hedge, this is incredible, your wattage ramps up another notch every day and post ... I don't think I've ever read an exploration of the thin veil where lost things become memory, but this sidhe is surely housed in the heart, not the mind ... Perhaps that's why the tone here is gentle for all the damage, perhaps the wounded girl sings, perched above the gap between "hurt and harm." So many delightful compressions ("fact turns to fiction, pain into history / in the shift, in the break." -- amen) ( "I found ten thousand ghosts / and the almost-necessities long since replaced;") In the medieval age memory was thought to be a storage house, and a good memory one visualized with a place for everything to be retrieved. All the hurtful losses are stored in this heart-keep, ever more crowed and crowded by ghosts. You'd have done terrible damage to this if it was a line shorter, Hedge. U rock, u rock, u rock.


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

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