Funereal Reflections


Photo: Wikipedia Commons--Labeled for Noncommercial Reuse

Photo: Wikipedia Commons–Labeled for Noncommercial Reuse

Funereal Reflections

The world moves on in timeless reverie
while doves o’er head turn westward to their homes, beyond.
Yon raven waits upon a gnarly tree.
Two empty spaces rest beside your tomb. For whom?
And night, tonight, descends on you alone.
We gather then, disperse and go our way, go home,
sure we shall live to tend another day.

Your life, a whisper in the ear of earth,
too soon forgotten by the race of men—so cold.
Can we embrace the promise of rebirth?
The blackbird swoops and preys upon a wren, more loss,
and we bare witness—cruel death again
invades a waking moment, ruptures ease, (such fear)
forsakes our very search for timeless peace.

This is my second poem for today’s prompt at dVerse Meeting the Bar. I took a poem I wrote in 2012 to Gay Cannon’s prompt for Rime Royal which demands strict adherence to iambic pentameter and a specific rhyme pattern and switched it up a bit, alternating iambic pentameter with hexameter (6 iambs), also known as alexandrine. Because Iambic Pentameter tends to be neutral, kind of like Tofu that depends on the flavors you add, I wanted to see what alternating rhythm would do to the mood. I’ll let you speak to it. Please check out the post on dVerse to learn more and bring a poem of your own.

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13 thoughts on “Funereal Reflections

  1. lillian says:

    I cannot comment on the meter — as I still don’t completely understand it. But I can comment on the emotion and the meanng of this poem and the visceral appeal it has to me. My brother was 9 years older than me, and died of a sudden heart attack when he was just 51. He was buried atop a hill in Denver, Colorado — a beautiful view in front of him. His death was extremely difficult for me…….but even more difficult was the walking away and leaving him there. Your poem – these words in particular: “And night, tonight, descends on you alone.” have encapsulated that moment again and I sit here with tears in my eyes. That is, I think, way beyond meter, the most complimentary thing one can say to a writer — this you have done — brought me inside your words.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. whimsygizmo says:

    I hate tofu (I find it texturally displeasing). I LOVE this.
    Such a somber feel here. And OH the brilliance and beauty of this line:
    “Your life, a whisper in the ear of earth”

    HEAVENS.

    Like

  3. Charley says:

    Melancholy, dark and foreboding. Reflective. I love the struggle you place in metaphor (our striving to believe in the spiritual interrupted by swooping reality). Beautiful.

    Like

  4. kim881 says:

    Oh yes, my kind of lament. I really like the lines:
    ‘Yon raven waits upon a gnarly tree.
    Two empty spaces rest beside your tomb. For whom?’
    The repetition of sound at the end of that line makes it sound like the raven is being mocked by an owl.

    Like

  5. Grace says:

    This is so eerily dark but like bjorn, the alternating meter works very well. This is my favorite lines Victoria:

    Two empty spaces rest beside your tomb. For whom?
    And night, tonight, descends on you alone.

    Like

  6. Horses for courses. This alternating meter works brilliantly for your subject, requiring careful and close reading. Your other metric poem (tetrameter) works better for the lighter subject.

    Like

  7. “Your life, a whisper in the ear of earth,
    too soon forgotten by the race of men—so cold.” This is beautiful, Victoria.

    Like

  8. Bodhirose says:

    This really spoke to me on so many levels and I love this line:”Your life, a whisper in the ear of earth,/too soon forgotten by the race of men—so cold.”

    It seems there’s someone or something that always preys on someone or something else. Could it be the natural way of this world, though sometimes too, too cruel?

    Like

  9. Sanaa Rizvi says:

    Sigh.. such a beautifully sombre poem, Victoria ❤

    Like

  10. Sue says:

    I, too, like the alternating meter which to my ears at least, lends a sombre note

    Like

  11. I do like the alternating meter a lot.. there is an uneasiness in the graveside lament which makes it work very well… yes pentameter can be so neutral.. tapioca meter, that makes versatile as prose.

    Like

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