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Reflections of Mary – A Sonnet

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This wild and precious life, you spent lonely

Foraging mushrooms, blackberries…and words

Still you have me pondering not only

On the calm of nature and nature stirred

But on the very essence of each breath

As trees speak my truth in leafy tongues, slurred

The sun meets my skin with every step

And the blue rain beats with my heart, broken

I’ve treasured your thoughts about life and death

Listened to canyons speak the unspoken

I have studied art on the earth’s floor

Weightless as the willows, with mind open

One with the animal spirits, I soar

Your words waxing with the moon evermore

 

 

(For Open Link Night and a late response to Jilly’s Enjambment in Sonnets, part of the Poetry Form challenge at dverse Poets Pub.)

Notes: I chose the Terza Rima form for this piece, consisting of a ABA BCB CDC DED EE rhyme scheme, adding a splash of enjambment. Since the thoughts of each tercet often flow into the next, I decided on leaving no line breaks between them. However, it could be edited into defined tercets, ending with the couplet to present it in traditional terza rima form. I would have to admit that the volta is not emphasized. I simply wanted to pay tribute to the late Mary Oliver, her love and insight of nature and how it has resonated with my own perspectives of life.

 

 

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54 responses »

  1. This is wonderful with the way you speak to the voice of “her”… which to me is nature itself.. to me the Volta is very present in the last couplet… almost like telling us her name.

    Reply
    • Thanks so much, Bjorn. This was out of my comfort zone. I was disappointed about missing Mr. Linky. I like the interpretation of nature being “her” as well. I’m so glad you could detect a volta.

      Reply
  2. i liked /the blue rain beats with my heart/. Lots of excellent word-smithing here. I was unaware it was in the sonnet form, which was great. Your words should over ride the form.

    Reply
  3. Beautiful. This poem bespeaks the essence of Mary Oliver – the first two lines. You made me feel her in those two lines. Best poem about Mary Oliver I have read in the flood of tribute poems.

    Reply
  4. Those opening lines are pure gold and stunning in their depth and imagery, Mish! ❤️ A befitting tribute! 🙂

    Reply
  5. Such a moving and lovely tribute to the words that Mary has left us. I love this part:

    But on the very essence of each breath
    As trees speak my truth in leafy tongues, slurred
    The sun meets my skin with every step
    And the blue rain beats with my heart, broken

    Reply
  6. A very nice piece… Very much Mary! So in touch with nature in every way.

    Reply
  7. I could definitely feel her influence on you while reading this.

    Reply
  8. exquisite tribute, the love shines through

    Reply
  9. A beautiful tribute sonnet to Mary Oliver, Mish. I like the intricacy of the rhyme scheme, the enjambment and the way each tercet flows into the next. I prefer the non-traditional form, which kind of illustrates the way she rambled, happily ‘foraging mushrooms, blackberries and words’. I especially love the phrases ‘trees speak my truth in leafy tongues’ and ‘canyons speak the unspoken’.

    Reply
  10. A beautiful tribute. I like the way the lines flow–the enjambment is so well-done, and the entire poem seems so effortless.

    Reply
  11. What an amazing tribute to such a gifted poet! I hope somehow she can hear it,

    Reply
  12. It immediately made me think of the Virgin Mary when I saw the title. Could also apply to the Great Mother I think–Mary Oliver connects us to that. I’m still trying to write a terza rima–you’ve got the rhythm I haven’t mastered yet. (K)

    Reply
  13. The sun meets my skin! Love that!

    Reply
  14. Nice tribute to Mary Oliver. I like thought of having an open mind while “I have studied art on the earth’s floor”.

    Reply
  15. This was enchanting Mish, excellent!

    Reply
  16. I also loved “I have studied art on the earth’s floor
    Weightless as the willows, with mind open”

    This is a very apt eulogy, and beautifully constructed.

    Reply
  17. Thank you so much, Nora. 🙂

    Reply
  18. A moving and profound witness, Mish, crafted with such care and attention to detail!

    Reply
  19. a sweet and touching tribute, Mary opened my eyes to scenes not familiar yet i could connect with, your form fits the joy you have for a beloved writer

    Reply
    • Thank you so much, Gina. I’m glad it brought you a little closer to Mary Oliver. I
      was really trying to bring her spirit into the poem.🙂

      Reply
      • i got to know her later in life but have always loved the New England landscape, she really brings it alive for me, your words echo her heart so much.

  20. Beautiful poem and a very accomplished sonnet, I like in particular the line “I have studied art on the earth’s floor”. That subtle rhyme between “art” and “earth” creates the line’s music….JIM

    Reply
  21. Most excellent sonnet!! It flows so easily, the meter and voice seamless with the meaning!

    Reply
  22. Hi, Mish…sorry I’ve been a stranger. Glad to “see” you again. This is wonderful, live the imagery and phrasing…”foraging- for words”
    AND this line “As trees speak my truth in leafy tongues, slurred” FAB

    Reply
  23. i like the complex verbiage and the metaphor in the passage

    Reply
  24. Beautiful Tribute, Mish. And thanks for teaching me about Terza Rima!

    – Joey Blue

    Reply
  25. Pingback: Time to Say Goodbye | Short Poem No. 60 – The Poetry About Us

  26. Hi there, I really enjoyed your poem. Excellent structure and wonderful words 🙂

    Reply

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