Category Archives: Poetry

Two Poems by Anwegwe

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Sunset #734

the fire dies down, and the colors rise up
rivers flow amber, gold, and blood-rose
cascading one upon the other
wave upon wave around the sky
pushing back the eastern dark
holding the light for one last hour
giving us time, time to remember
all of the days we have had together
the glorious days beneath the sun

The main character in my recent book, All That Was Asked, is a poet. It’s a first-person narrative, and he keeps mentioning how people reacted to a poem, or how much he enjoyed writing a poem, or that he likes to watch sunsets because they inspire poetry. But . . . there aren’t any poems in the book itself. It seemed to me I couldn’t quite measure up to the standard implied in the text . . . one gets the impression, although Ansegwe is self-effacing about it, that he’s actually rather good.

Still . . . it’s nagged at me, that I didn’t have any poems by Varayla Ansegwe. After spending hours and days and weeks and months with him, I’m sort of a fan, if you will. If I were a real fan, I’d have his work, wouldn’t I?

So I gave it a try. It’s interesting, to try to write personal-style poetry from someone else’s perspective. The one above results from all those mentions of poetry related to watching sunsets. Imagine our hero trotting down the hill after enjoying a really nice day’s-ending light show, muttering to himself, wriggling his fingers, anxious to scribble down this latest idea. We can leave it to your imagination how he improved this “draft”.

For a second poem, I tried to combine two things from his background. First, it seems Ansegwe had a fairly decent collegiate-level ranking in, well, whatever ball game is popular in Korlo. I envision it as sort of like baseball, maybe like an upsized version of kickball, with a larger, rugby-sized ball. Lots of running, jumping, catching, throwing–very energetic. Second, it’s evident that he was quite the one for romantic entanglements.

If I can gather enough of these, I’ll put together a little “collection” that I can share at events and such. Oh, and as a reminder . . . consider these as translated from Korlovian.

(Photos are mine. All from our own universe, alas.)

Intercept

In this moment,
there is only the ball, gliding on its parabolic arc.
It requires all of your mind to calculate the leap
the extension of your arm, the stretch of your fingers
the breath you draw at its approach
the strength you need to hurl it to your comrades.
 
For this moment, you do not know that she is gone.
For this moment, your heart is no more than a muscle.
Whether the ball glides into your hand
whether it skims your fingertips and caroms off under the lights
either way, you will crash to earth again
the world's gravity will bear you down
the moment will end
and you will know.
 
But in this moment, you leap
and time stretches to meet you.

Passage

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Moon & Spica

Eclipsed Moon With Spica

 

 

A few weeks ago, we had a beautiful lunar eclipse visible in North America.  It was well worth sitting out to watch the Earth’s shadow advance until the Moon was completely covered and glowing with a warm red hue, then retreat until the Moon shone bright once again.  Here is a combination of a poem written for a workshop many years back, inspired by another lunar eclipse, with a few photos from this year’s event.  Multitudes of astrophotographers caught fine images of that eclipse.  This time, my equipment on hand was my hardy little point-and-shoot Lumix, which yielded many images suitable for artistic manipulation, especially with effects added by the drifting fog that interrupted our clear view.  Mars was in view as well, so I’ll include one image with Mars.  Can you spot it?

I watch the Mother walk my night,

spreading her darkness through my shadows.

She turns to me as the night turns, and I watch, I gaze,

rapt in the music of her light.

 

2014 April 14-15 Total Lunar Eclipse
Wrapped round and full in the stillness of this, my night,

she draws in light and darkness from the sky,

and sets them in my hands and at my feet,

until the whole land is an image of sky,

until I am full, full round and whole,

wholly wrapped in the music within my darkness.

 

Fog Rainbows
She waxes as the night wanes, and I gaze, gaze,

until I dream I am a fish which has never before known water,

and now, for the first time, breathes …

until I dream I am a child who has never known her name,

and now, for the first time, dreams …

 

Artist's Impression
dreams she stands with a woman, a stranger,

in a land which bears an image of sky.

The other, the stranger, is silent beside her,

while she speaks to the mother as a favored daughter.

As she speaks, I give back through my hands

the light and darkness which is the sky

until the land rests again beneath my shadows,

until the child knows me for herself.

 

Floating in the Ether
Even as we greet and join each other,

the Mother steps over the edge of the world.

Even as the stars first claim the sky,

I breathe the mist of my first morning.

 

Bloodshed Moon

 

Machine Design

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I draw for you the art of Leonardo:
 
A man whose legs are feathered airfoils
of that smooth asymmetric camber
which folds the wind under an eagle’s wings.
 
A man poised in a cage of struts and sailcloth,
curved like the feathers on the haft of an arrow,
an apparatus geared to spin, to lift him free.
 
The paintings were for money.
 
 
 
 
This poem first appeared in Hadrosaur Tales #19, 2004.  You can still find copies of the original Hadrosaur Tales online at clarkesworldbooks.  Meanwhile, Hadrosaur Productions now publishes a new magazine, Tales of the Talisman, as well as novels, short fiction collections, and audio recordings.  Look them up at www.hadrosaur.com

 

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