Violation–dVerse Open Link Night


When words force entry,
molest my every conscious thought—then,
surrender, I must, or endure unrelenting torture.

(Fire rages, outrages across our valley,
scorches acres upon acres of pine and cheat grass,
assaults, blasts, torments verdant mountain ranges.)

Words hound me without ceasing,
shove me from bed at 3 AM,
hammer, barrage, rape

(Deer, squirrels, bluebirds, bears flee
for safety, though flames overtake them,
devastate their habitat.)

serenity, rip it from my soul,
until I respond, rearrange them
on pure white sheets

(Ashes plunge into pristine waters,
hurl charred fragments, suffocate,
pollute, wash sepia across blue skies.)

of blank paper in my notebook.
Slowly intensity subsides
and I taste fulfillment.

(Last night a gentle rain showered
the Great Basin, purged the air.
Smoke will return, but this morn, we garden.)


Tonight is the popular Open Link Night at dVerse where both topic and form are up to you. I was unable to participate in the wonderful prompt for Poetics this week on muscle verbs so I decided to expand it a bit combining a poem about poetry with a poem about landscape.

While both Northern Nevada and Northern California are both experiencing multiple wild fires, most of which are due to human carelessness, we are currently not in danger, but the smoke does pour into Reno off and on. The worst is from a fire at a distance of maybe 150-200 miles near Yosemite in central California. Please keep our first responders in your prayers. They are going from one fire to another with very little sleep. Ironically, we did have some rain last night which resulted in flash floods in a community north of us.

The doors to the pub will open Thursday at 3:00 PM EDT

Image: CalamityMeg via Flickr



42 thoughts on “Violation–dVerse Open Link Night

  1. mandibelle16 says:

    Enjoyed this a lot the writers words verses the tragedy happen outside and her relief having written what she needed to say, symbolized by the relative peace, no more just smoke as the fire clears.


  2. Steve King says:

    So interesting, the way you portray literary creation as a sensual and physical act. The analogy holds for me completely. Very original.


  3. The contrasting take immediately that followed on the right put a lot of play into the poem to make it lingering to great effect



  4. An interesting comparison, that poetry could sort of happen to you, like a rape or a wildfire, and then your thoughts and words remain to make sense of the devastation. I like that the end hints at another wave of destruction as this is how we deal with trauma, in waves. These feelings are well-articulated by your imagery. Thanks for sharing!


  5. MarinaSofia says:

    A harsh flicker and whipping of words for a very frightening subject – the south of France is currently experiencing some bad forest fires. Sadly, it’s becoming an annual occurence.


  6. The force of the word torrent matches that of the fire…this is a dizzying dance across both page and landscape. Wonderful piece of writing Victoria.


  7. Colin Lee says:

    While each side is an independent poem in its own right, incredible poetic synergy results from their duet. Inspiring, moving, powerful. Prayers go out to the firefighters and affected residents (both human and wild).


  8. Ayala says:

    Prayers sent your way and to all those affected.


  9. ladynyo says:

    This is so different a form, and I really like it. You portray perfectly the angst of terror…these fires, the fleeing animals, the trapped animals and the firefighters who give their lives at times….too many times. This poem held me captive.


  10. Alwi Shatry says:

    Whoever said “it’s only words”. Here they project the power to awaken an awareness of our fragile environment; even the power to douse the flames.


  11. I have the same midnight epiphanies that will not let my brain rest until I get up and commit them to paper.
    I can only guess the trauma of having the fires so close. Thank heaven for the showers!


  12. superwifeandmummy says:

    So emotive


  13. Waltermarks says:

    You got some powerful, forceful verbs there, lady. I will pray for the firefighters and Reno

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Glenn Buttkus says:

    Wow–audacious, complex & completely satisfying; one of your best writes this year. Year after year, wildfires devastate the SW & NW; several times over summer road trips. from Lake Louise to Mojave, from Flagstaff to White Sands, fires have turned us back & polluted our fun. I’v e read where Native Americans used to control burn underbrush, which prevented many fires–we, presently., pay no attention to them.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sanaa Rizvi says:

    Such an incredibly potent write, Victoria!❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Frank Hubeny says:

    Nice comparison of the power of words with forest fires.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. A very powerful write Victoria and the strength in the verbs shows the fire inside you too. I hope you will all continue to stay safe xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  18. It sounds terrifying. I like how you have styled this. I hope you stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I love the structure, and the the threatening power of words that refuse to be denied. They are like that, aren’t they? Claiming their time, even if we don’t have it.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Charley says:

    Forgive me for not responding earlier, when I gave you that cold, impersonal “like” and moved on. I was deep in other thoughts and, truly, did not take your poem in as I wished. Wow! Your poetic voice had a raucous night of it! My muses are usually a bit more… sedate. But then, I’m a big, scary guy. Grrrr! 🙂 Anyway, it’s no wonder your words molest… your world is asunder. Sound sleep is not likely. Excellent write!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. I don’t know why…but for no apparent reason. I started to cry when reading your poem. I think what I am feeling inside relates to your poem.

    Humanity must take care of planet earth. It is unfair in how its being treated.

    Heart felt poem and moving.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Sue Vincent says:

    The analogy between rape and wildfire is stunning.


  23. kim881 says:

    I love the layout, Victoria, and the use of verbs, particularly in the opening lines (force entry, molest and surrender);:
    ‘scorches acres upon acres of pine and cheat grass,
    assaults, blasts, torments verdant mountain ranges’;
    ‘Words hound me without ceasing,
    shove me from bed at 3 AM,
    hammer, barrage, rape’.
    You’ve created a devastating scene of nature and sleeplessness!

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Stunning write! and snap on the layout – I did something similar. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  25. jillys2016 says:

    Flaming good poetry here, Victoria!! The contasts and comparisons between the fires and the words; the raping of the land and your sleep, all so well written. I’m so glad you are gardening today with a reprieve from the smoke.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. kanzensakura says:

    I truly like this style from you. They read excellently separate and the same together. Sometimes our muse is rough with us and unrelenting. Sometimes our muse is more gentle. I hope the fires subside to give the first responders some respite. They truly do need our prayers and our thanks for all they do.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I know you’ve been struggling with fires and I’m glad it seems to have abated in your corner at least. This poem whips along, furious as a forest fire.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Bodhirose says:

    I love your dual poem here, Victoria, and you used your verbs expertly to describe both scenarios. Fire is such a frightening thing. When you smell that smoke in the air, you’re never quite sure where the fire is and how close you are to danger.

    Thank you very much for your “wake-up call” for me and your support, Victoria. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Thotpurge says:

    A great way to present two parallel thoughts and draw out the similarities…


  30. lillian says:

    “wash sepia across blue skies”
    You’ve described the unrelenting fires and the devastation they bring
    and the push of words that come to the surface, even in the middle of the night, that the poet must write.
    This is exquisite.
    And yes………..for all emergency responders, firefighters, and those who enter harms’ way that others may be safe, we give thanks and offer prayers .

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Sue says:

    Excellent write, love the way you have penned this, Victoria…. As to human carelessness, thoughtlessness – what to say?

    Liked by 1 person

  32. This is really lovely, Victoria. I love this style.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Mother Hen says:

    Heart felt and prayers for all…

    Liked by 1 person

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