Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Roundelay

Both times I died, it was in the Spring--
blackbirds and orioles arrived, their songs caught in my bones
and then released; the chime and ring
of their heartbeats rapid as loss or seasons begun and ended alone.

Look at the lies I tell, my mouth stuffed 
full of them, nests of poison and nonsense, or just blowy leaf-rot
assembled into rounds of order by tufted
dandelion balls--birds of instinct, my betters likelier than not.

Both times I died, the summer came anyway,
and I walked all night, a bag of storms wandering from the crossroad
to haunt myself mad, a gibbering roundelay
of keen and commonly human desire, to be sung after all, 

from the fire and from the bone.
_____

 

18 comments:

hedgewitch said...

Lyric and intense, and despite its claims to song, more of a burning brand, perhaps the torch the fire-swallower eats, the flamed breath he spits out. The structure of this I find very interesting--the symbolism of birds and seasons, then the change of moods in the middle stanza, the abruptness, then the fluid move to the cadenced end. It feels pulled out from the heart's roots. Shay. A bag of storms. (!) Fine work.

Kerry O'Connor said...

Too many ways to die, before one's death... You poemr spins us around that paradox. Sad to face a death on a day of orioles, though.

Outlawyer said...

Beautifully done, Shay--lyric and intense and with a conviction that makes the fantastical seem real and make sense. Agh. The bag of storms, the singing in the bones, the dandelion puffs, the wandering ghost of self, all memorable. k.

Kay L. Davies said...

You never cease to amaze me, Shay. Wow.
Love, K

brudberg said...

To find a narrative from "both time I died" (would be a great title of a novel BTW)... and then wind it into the sadness of spring... like how really blooms are another form of tears...

Lynn said...

I agree - that is a great line, "both times I died..."

Aria said...

And still so many lives to go, Miss Kitty. You're sure a brilliant poet, my dear. At least as I read it, you're eating the birds. That's how you get their songs. Sometimes you're roadkill, or maybe you have a nasty fall and kill yourself (for a minute or two). But then you pop back up and keep exploring. Gibbering rune-delay. And still, there's phoenix and human in you as well. Certainly a magical creature, one not pinpointed, named, or defined --- at least, that's how I imagine you.

I love how you set it up that you traditionally die in the spring, when everything else is coming to life.

These are my favorites:
"rapid as loss or seasons begun and ended alone"
"nests of poison and nonsense"
"tufted" (toughed-it)
"dandelion balls"
"I walked all night, a bag of storms wandering from the crossroad
to haunt myself mad, a gibbering roundelay"

Bekkie Sanchez said...

I like your lines, "blackbirds and orioles arrived, their songs caught in my bones" and "Look at the lies I tell, my mouth stuffed
full of them, nests of poison and nonsense, or just blowy leaf-rot." You are so surprising and though with your work Shay. I always want to just say wow!

Buddah Moskowitz said...

My favorite flavor, bittersweet. La la Mosk

Cloudia said...

You are as extreme as one might be without transformation to an entirely other dimentsion

Sioux said...

Holy moly. The line breaks, the images, the lone line at the end, standing by itself.

Wow.

Why haven't you been named the National Poet Laureate yet?

Stacy Lynn Mar said...

this is full of unspoken stories...
each line leaves one wishing for a backstory. i feel the death is metaphoric...makes me wonder what really died...was it resurrected?

my favorite line: and I walked all night, a bag of storms wandering from the crossroad

Marian said...

This seems so in the moment, so fresh, the wounds barely scabbed over. Kinda weird to read it with the background of fall leaves. (Hope you are feeling better.)

Mama Zen said...

Wow. I can't even begin to pick a favorite line.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Yes. Like everyone else, all I can say is wow.

Susie Clevenger said...

Death comes in so many stages. It breaks our glass hearts, but the memories in their reflections keeps us going. This is one of my favorite pieces from your pen.

wkkortas said...

You had me at the Tull tag. This is flat-out terrific, one of the happiest marriages of form and flesh-and-blood I have read in goodness knows how long, a tune that ended too soon for us all.

Margaret said...

Death does't always come when we desire it. A beautiful poem that delicately walks a high-wire. I have been thinking of you... Hope your hospital stay was short and productive! Keep writing ...