Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sides Of The River

On this side of the river,
I stand on frozen ground.
On the other side of the river,
I hear a woman drowned last night.
She fell through the ice
reaching for the stars.

On this side of the river,
I can hear the murmurs start.
No one tries to cross that river
without a broken mind or heart.
But, she had neither.
I was going to meet her
with the moon in a Mason jar.

But the moon slipped like snowflakes through my fingers,
and I never got that far.

For Ed's Get Listed at Real Toads

27 comments:

Helen said...

Your poem is beautiful And sad.

Kerry O'Connor said...

She fell through the ice
reaching for the stars...

It is lines like these that I adore in poetry, because they allow my mind to expand in unexpected directions.

The entire poem is tragic and beautiful.

Marian said...

aaaahhh i can hear this one, sing it for me?

hedgewitch said...

As always, the truth you chose to find shines with the sharp beauty, and the cold fatality of ice, and clear as snowmelt the warmth wandering deep beneath it. I love "the moon in a Mason jar."

Mary said...

Very poignant, sad!

ed pilolla said...

i had to read this twice, and very slowly the second time. that's the power of a narrative. spooky, rad story told with a light, magic hand.

Sylvia K said...

Oh, very poignant indeed!! You really got me below the belt with this one, MZ!

Susan said...

O! speechless. God Help us all.

Gail said...

A tapestry woven from beautiful threads...

Sherry Blue Sky said...

"I was going to meet her with the moon in a mason jar". How poignant.

Robert Bourne said...

there is a tragic air about this...if you re read it you can see the different layers that are in place....

ps... I prefer moonshine in my mason jar... :)

Hannah said...

Goosebumps. Wow. You have such a way with these stark images I just love the way you framed the already powerful images of moon and star and then made them MORE powerful! Wow, MZ!!

kaykuala said...

But the moon slipped like snowflakes through my fingers,
and I never got that far.

Classic ending MZ. It holds true in many situations if not rightly focussed! Nicely!

Hank

Margaret said...

…speechless. Leaves me wondering if she would have even been happy with the moon.

Powerful poem.

Brian Miller said...

really nice rhythm mz...and what a story...love the moon in a mason jar...think i would drop the 'last night' as it breaks up the rhythm a bit...

Vandana Sharma said...

Emotions and rivers!!

Sharp Little Pencil said...

To fall through the ice while reaching for the stars, how sad... and then the narrator never gets to give her the moon in - a MASON jar, that was an inspired turn of phrase. Mama, you rocked the prompt. Lovely. Amy

Lorraine said...

the pain of it all shivers down my back like ice cubes, you amaze me Mama Zen

Fireblossom said...

You know what? The "last night" in the first stanza bothers me, it doesn't have your usual flow. What about this:

On this side of the river,
I stand on frozen ground.
On the other side of the river,
I hear a woman drowned.
Last night,
She fell through the ice
reaching for the stars.

All I did was to put a period after "drowned" (which also makes the first stanza agree with the second) and added a comma after "night".

Or, you could smack me upside my pompous-ass head. Whichever works for you!

Sioux said...

Good grief, Mama Zen--what a sad (but wonderful) way to begin the morning...

grapeling said...

shorter days and diminishing light.

Kay L. Davies said...

The poem is stunning in its simplicity and pain, but it seems to have engendered a debate.
MY take on "last night"? I would leave it in, exactly as you wrote it, or at least exactly as it appears here now.
There's an old song (all the songs in my life are old) that your poem brings to mind: "Ode to Billie Joe" by Bobbie Gentry.
K

razzamadazzle said...

This is so fascinating and sad at the same time. I really enjoyed this.

razzamadazzle said...

This is so fascinating and sad at the same time. I really enjoyed this.

Ella said...

I want the moon in a mason jar!
I enjoyed your poem-sad n' beautiful

Sam Edge said...

love this poem MZ. a little moonshine in the mason jar?

blueoran said...

Your sides of the river reminds me of what Jung once said of the difference between Joyce and his mad daughter Lucia -- one swims to the bottom of the same river the other drowns in. Same yearning, different ends. You carve these things with a really fine hand. - Brendan