Sunday, 14 November 2010

Coming early for the poetry bus.

I have quite a busy day tomorrow and very little I feel like doing tonight, so this is tomorrow's blog a day early. I am sure, if i was more computer-literate, I could write it tonight and get blogger to post it in the morning.

The poetry prompt was to think about a yes or no decision we had made or a crossroads we had come to where we had to make a decision.

A poem I have always admired is Henry Reed's Naming of Parts from his Lessons of the War - an apt poem to read on Remembrance Day. It tells the story of a young man being forced to listen to gun drill while looking out of the window and seeing the beauty of nature. It is a fine juxtaposition between the good and the evil I suppose. It gave me the idea for my offer for the Poetry Bus this week:-


Displacement Activity.

Come to a decision -
yes or no.
Not so difficult,
it's only a small word
either way.

The sky is the most
incredible blue, and
white clouds hang as though
attached by threads.

Make up my mind -
yes or no.
Until I decide
everything's uncertain.

On the fence a wren
sings his high, shrill song;
so loud a song,
so small a bird.

Which is politic?
yes or no.
Such a lot rests on
decision.

The winter jasmine
flowers already;
the dark leaves are
studded with yellow stars.

15 comments:

Heather said...

An interesting poem Pat. I have been very lax lately and written nothing at all. It is almost as if now my textile creativity has returned, I have lost the ability to express myself in words.

Jinksy said...

The last verse is the perfect reason for not deciding either way! LOL

Karen said...

...and this is a most wondeful poem, Pat! I absolutely love it, as as a take from Naming of Parts, it's perfect. (That is one of my favorite poems, too, by the way.) Yes or no. Small words with huge consequences.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Lovely thoughtfully wrought poem Pat and aren't 'yes' and 'no' such small words yet pack such a punch, bit like the little wren.

Such definitive words and probably the most often used to lie.And perhaps a gun is the biggest lie of all and yet so many people are conditioned to choose it and not the sky.

The Bug said...

I'm so bad about just going ahead & making a decision already instead of actually considering the best choice of action. The next time I'm faced with a decision I'm reading your poem!

Peter Goulding said...

Lovely pictures painted in this poem - love that final stanza in particular

Kat Mortensen said...

I like that juxtaposition of what's going in the world and how it makes the decision seem almost inconsequential.
"On the fence a wren" is my favourite line.

Kat

willow said...

Wonderful piece, Pat. The last line is especially nice.

Poet in Residence said...

Pat,
the Poetry 2010 Project is now completed. There are 2 poems by you and 3 by your friend Joan C. It all prints to 12 pages. Many thanks,
Gwilym

dinesh chandra said...

great poem good to watch your blog again after many days.
regards

dinesh chnadra

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thanks to everyone who left a comment.

The Weaver of Grass said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Elizabeth said...

What a beautiful view you have on the way to the store.
I drive through heavy traffic and unhappy people!
Your poem is lovely and I wish you many more ordinary days this season!

M.E.

patteran said...

There's a nice sense about this of the decision not actually being very important. The preoccupation with those beauties of nature alternating with the demands to make a decision juxtapose priorities very well and whilst the spirit of the Henry Reed classic hovers, this poem is very much in your own voice.

Titus said...

Beautiful juxtaposition of the natural world and the world of we, and thought. It questions so deeply what is significance.