Friday, February 7, 2020

The Extortion Of Winter








The Extortion of Winter







On the blind grass of January, horses gladly
pay the charge of the sun's extortion,
up on their heels as if the sun made spring.

I look at your picture and smile
as if your face was a flower,

bright as a bloodstone
in some meadow where
memory has gone to its grave.







January 2020
















posted for earthweal's












Image: Rearing Horse, 1503, by Leonardo Da Vinci    Public Domain
Poppy, author unknown, Fair Use



16 comments:

  1. This is beautiful! I love how you first set the scene..... then traced the path of the memory. It ends on a sigh.

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    1. Thank you Vivian. No poet can hope for a better reaction.

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  2. Yes, it ends on a sigh, and so beautifully.

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    1. Thank you Sherry. Sighs say more than words, sometimes.

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  3. there's something hypnotic about the cadence of those first 3 lines, this is an arresting and accomplished poem....well done, JIM

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    1. Thanks very much, Jim. Sometimes less is more. ;-)

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  4. I am not completely sure what you are writing about here, though I can guess, knowing you as I do. In any case, there is the peace of being reconciled here, a bargain not asked for but ultimately to be lived with and none the poorer for that. Or so I read. I hope I am not too far off the mark, dear BFF o' mine. <3

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    1. Not at all. I'll just say the words 'as if" are the key here. Thanks for reading with your poet's heart, my friend. You can never go wrong with that.

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  5. Love is divine & blind & numbing as well as toxic if the choice is wrong as it ends up in buried memories. I don't know why such thoughts came up as I read the lines. May be the poem says something very different from what I've gathered. As others said, "It ends on a sigh..."

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    1. Thanks, Sumana. You are reacting just as I felt when I wrote it, and I found parallels of some of that feeling in your own short poem--a moment in time becomes a lifetime in our memories, for good or ill.

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  6. Like an icicle gleaming as it melts, I wonder at meanings Shay and let it go, the horses dance in what joy or purity they still can muster on the interface which turns out to be a photo's reverie. Dance on, ghost, even flower. - Brendan

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    1. Thanks B. Sometimes it is best to let the focus relax, and to see with swimmy eyes something the lens itself does not reveal as clearly.

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  7. Beautiful, and as deeply satisfying as only good poetry is – despite the (accepted) sorrow in it. Lovely juxtaposition of the horses with the personal.

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  8. The repetition of as if sounds to me like a wish for something to be really different... maybe a bit like a wish to be able to turn your face to the sun like a sunflower...

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  9. I love the idea of facing winter like a horse, up on our heels! Hell yes. As we sit all hunkered down and sullen, the most fun I had last winter was strapping on snowshoes in the hills around Marquette. Wasn't up on my heels but I didn't fall down! Thanks for this reminder that with the sun soon comes spring.

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  10. There is something about the word choice pay and extortion that makes me feel a bit uneasy. Is there a price for enlightenment?

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