Form: Free verse
It's summer, and sunlight's syrup pours sweet into afternoon.
We've come to the bungalow's cemetery
to pick over bones of bygone days;
touch time's tender skin, lay flowers on childhood's grave.
The Lodge is razed to the ground. We raise
our eyes to sky and take each big breath of blue.
Sharp lemon-light cuts through
the detritus of our days; the oaks once cloaked in dark.
The knotweed nooses and dreamlike domes of fly agaric
have all been cleared; the forest sentinels' leafless limbs
discarded - an abattoir of strangeness, sawdust-strewn.
But all dismemberment is a clearing of sorts.
The echoes of emptiness eavesdrop
on each reminiscence, as we forage for a few last remnants:
blue paisley swirls of 70s tiles,
red bricks from an 80s fireplace.
A yearning rises suddenly, slick sick-sour in my throat...
and yet, it feels cathartic, this purging of the past;
this merging of our then and now,
this blending of bitter and sweet.
This poem was written by Charlotte Puddifoot and was the clear (no pun) winner in my contest. It exemplifies showing versus telling and does so by eliciting emotion and inciting the reader's personal perceptions. I would love for you to discuss what makes it excellent writing and what you think it is about. I think I truly know but will join the discussion as it proceeds. This could be fun and educational. Where did she show? The uncommon word pairings? The personifications? etc etc
I'll ad here what Charlotte said about the inspiration and you can see how she developed it into a poem -did have a look at your blog and what people thought my poem was about..it was actually about a day in summer when my sister and i revisited the site where we grew up, an old lodge bungalow with an acre of wild garden and wood behind it, it was a listed building but property developers bought it and demolished it all, they also cleared all the woods behind the house..we wanted to see the site one last time, but it was very sad seeing all the rubble of our old home, and we both said how strange it felt, almost as if our younger years had all been erased, as if they had never existed..it was this i tried to get into the poem, with reference to fly agaric etc, was it all just a dream, a hallucination? i also wanted the bitter/sweet theme to run through the poem, the sweetness of our happy childhood memories contrasting with the sadness of the present, bittersweet indeed..i'm a very intuitive, imagistic writer, i don't necessarily think too deeply about the meaning behind the lines i'm writing, i just go where the images take me, but i do think a lot about the technicalities in a poem; for me, writing a poem is almost like building a sculpture..