Sunday, April 17, 2016

Time And The Reap

Time and The Reap

Time may dull away pain
that drives you mad
but time is slow

while madness will grow.
So long ago
in a nightingale's gown

I sang for you;
when I was a wren
I wove.

When I was a reed,
I bent for you
and all the while called it love.

When my breasts were the apples
on Yggdrasil
when my eyes were Lethe's mad run

when my arms and legs were
the loom of the Norns, you found a way
to use each one.

Time remakes me
a bird dying in snow,
a reed gone hollow

missed in the reap;
only my heart
is living yet.

Have you
a use for that 
before we sleep?

~April 2016

posted for    real toads

Yggdrasil:Scandinavian Mythology: the world tree-- an evergreen ash which the Norns water and where they sit weaving the fates of men.

Images: Freya, Das Rheingold,
The Fates on Brunnhilde's Rock,  by Arthur Rackham 
public domain via wikimedia commons


  1. Ah, this is beautiful, Hedge--really lyrical and singing and mythical in all the right ways--meaning that all the symmetry feels like it had to be the way it is even though the shapes and changes that the me takes, and the objects take are original and unique. I especially like the reed bending for love--and, of course, the heart at the end. It has the terrible poignancy of something like The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein--not my favorite kids' book so I almost hate to bring it up--but you know the loving being that gives all and is left in a way with so little but its love--the apples of Yggarasel--can't spell and afraid to leave comment must have some specific meaning--I don't know it but will check--but love the forgetfulness of the eyes like Lethe--and due to my classical education can't help thinking of Pascal's reed--but this is a woman reed, so somehow bends in a much more intentional and flexible way--anyway--really lovely, thanks. k.

  2. ps - love the reap as opposed to the reaper--what time ends up with I guess or the big D at the end of scythe--there's a little of rape, there too, I guess--but I believe that a overly self-effacing--not the right word--self-negating kind of love can certainly be perfectly voluntary. k.

  3. Ohhhh mercy. This broke my heart. There's nothing i can say that will add anything to this masterful expression of all that we try to gain and usually lose in love and all of its disguises. I want to make this into a poster and put it on my wall; it's that good.

  4. Oh I love how you express the way love can be destructive... how there are those that reap what other's sow.. how they always find a benefit in destiny, and come out on top.

  5. Does the heart have three lives in the infernal book of poesy? I think so. Or three times three, but over who knows how many lives? And who says they are evenly distributed (the future isn't so why should the past.) Anyway: There's such arrest in the fourth line, you have to stop and read it and stare at it and let it sink in before proceeding into what ain't Kansas (or the Tunnel of Love) any more. If Time is the devourer, then Love is some lackey--slurping the juice from the speaker's devout eyeballs as he proceeds. Surely the third course is a doozy, the embrace we've been waiting for. Or is it? Is death the ultimate souffle served up by Eros? I sure don't mean to be flippant H, the sadness here is arch. Dido's Lament times ... well, three. Major loss in such a minor, minor key.

  6. Such a heart-breaking mourning song. You have achieved such a momentum with the clauses of time, denoting each part and culminating in these words:'you found a way to use each one.' That really blew me away. The final question dealt a killer blow, surely to everyone who has felt used, only to be discarded.

  7. Gorgeous. "So long ago in a nightingale's gown I sang for you. When I was a wren I wove." Sigh. A profoundly beautiful and sad poem.

  8. Bravo!!! I echo the thoughts of others. This is just superb.

  9. I feel like I should be wailing while I read this... there is so much pain running through this lines. To be wanted and delighted in is a drug... one that breaks the heart (and often the mind) and gone. So beautifully sad.

  10. MAN. This is just gorgeous.
    I love this, best:
    "When I was a reed,
    I bent for you
    and all the while called it love."

  11. Oh love can take all we are until we are empty...This is beautiful, a melancholy I think we all will experience or have experienced in life.

  12. This is so poignant, I felt such empathy with her sorrow, I especially liked the lines
    "Time remakes me
    a bird dying in snow,
    a reed gone hollow"

  13. Love can indeed be destructive. This is heart-breakingly beautiful and excellent for the prompt. I had to stop and read a couple of times, it's so goood.

  14. superb. chills along my arms. i've nothing really to add (being addled) ~

  15. (I don't really mean to suggest that everyone else's isn't poetry - but yours suddenly transported me wholly.)

  16. You captured the amazing essence of love imploding. A beautiful layering of images, till the weight becomes 'weightless'.

  17. I love the tree intriguing. You've woven magic of your lines and for me, the reed section was especially affecting. Really well written, Hedge...thank you for the challenge.


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