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Lonesome Backwoods

In the lonesome backwoods behind our vintage house

We buried our souls deep just to have ghosts around.


But phantoms, they startle, howl, scream and weep

Way past their bedtimes because the night doesn’t seep

Into their cavities where they safeguard our souls,

Still glowering in caskets of gold.


And that’s what they’ll ever be-

Fossilized memories,

Vessels of love,

That we left at the mercy of insidious groves.


Are you seeing how

In a brazen pig-out

They devour the flesh of the rose

Through which blood flows?

I see the white spirits hovering above

Fireweeds and tall trees and wilted foxgloves.


Clad in ivory sheets, they seek the unsought,

But take with them nothing more than what they brought.

And what they brought can’t be held, caressed, or cradled

Its intangibility a fatal flaw; as good as dead.


And that’s what it’ll ever be-

A fossilized memory,

A vessel of love,

That we left at the mercy of insidious groves.


But do you see how they still subsist

On a fragile bed of silt?

The ghosts, their caskets, their belongings

And everything we threw away in a jiffy?


On the blotched earth I stand

Till the sun falls below the loose sand.















◄ Millay, Millay


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Shifa Maqba

Sat 13th Feb 2021 17:06

Thank you so so so much, Martin and Stephen for your generous comments and roses!

A huge thanks to Adam and Holden as well for the lovely roses!

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Stephen Atkinson

Fri 12th Feb 2021 18:38

Wonderful use of words, and, as Martin says, imagery, Shifa.
Superb ?

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Martin Elder

Fri 12th Feb 2021 15:02

Absolutely stunning imagery. A wonderful poem

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