Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Rik George writes

Remembrance Twenty-Two

The hollow gurgle of summer streams
Flowing over rocky beds
Murmurs in my ears. The clouds
Above drift with the grace of dreams

Through skies painted brass and blue
By the summer sun. She is not here,
The last of my generation. Where
She spends her days I do not know.

Last April brought a cruel spring.
It bred no lilacs from cold ground
But death with sharpened scythe came round
And forestalled all my bothering

To provide for her when my time came.
She died untimely, much too young
She had more harmonies to sing
She had more future scenes to dream

But all that planned retirement went
Away in scattered tendrils of smoke,
Wisps that drifted until they broke
And all their dreaming power was spent.

I hear the silence reverberate
With echoed memories of her
Reciting reasons she would share
For sacrificing all for her cat.

The silence has become my friend,
A bulwark against the emptiness
I wallow in. My days are less
Each sunrise marks the approach of my end.

 The Olive Grove, c.1889 Poster by Vincent van Gogh
The Olive Grove --Vincent van Gogh

1 comment:

  1. Rik seems to have been clearly influenced by the opening lines of T. S. Eliot's "The Waste Land":

    April is the cruellest month, breeding
    Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
    Memory and desire, stirring
    Dull roots with spring rain....
    Summer surprised us....

    What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow
    Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,
    You cannot say, or guess, for you know only
    A heap of broken images, where the sun beats,
    And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,
    And the dry stone no sound of water. Only
    There is shadow under this red rock,
    (Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
    And I will show you something different from either
    Your shadow at morning striding behind you
    Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
    I will show you fear in a handful of dust.


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