in sleep

entry picture



The rain snaps

on the window pane

like sticks.



a young man’s sleep -

he’s gone

head back

neck curved

a swan.


Breathe even

breathe deep

dream on

dream sweet.

I don’t sleep


lie thinking

I’ll not pass

this way

again as

dawn breaks

with rain.


Next night


I feel his flesh

against my mouth.




◄ in arms not meant

An Ingres Back ►


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Ann Foxglove

Mon 19th Dec 2011 08:08

Thanks so much guys! You are all so kind!

Anthony and John - I was aiming for a degree of poignancy - wot r u like! ;)

Cynthia - no way! (Mother and son). And he is "gone" into that deep untroubled kind of sleep that young people seem to manage. And maybe that sleep symbolises the unreachableness of the man.

Ray - re last verse - I'd like to add something to imply that skin/flesh has a memory, as they say that water has. Not sure how, yet.

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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Fri 16th Dec 2011 17:49

The lines are lovely. Without the picture the poem could be so different. I saw a mother with a son, with perhaps a secret kiss good-night. Where has 'he' gone the next day? To war? To marriage? To 'too old to be openly hugged and kissed'? The poem's power of suggestion is its great strength.

P.S. The picture really is fab, with its Oedipus overtones.

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Fri 16th Dec 2011 01:18


'Next night
I feel his flesh
against my mouth.'

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Anthony Emmerson

Thu 15th Dec 2011 22:10

Never mind what Coopey says - you fill yer boots lass! :)



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John Coopey

Thu 15th Dec 2011 21:38

Yer dirty Gerty!

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Ray Miller

Thu 15th Dec 2011 19:24

Nice poem, tricky ending.In the penultimate verse "as" might be better starting the next line

I’ll not pass
this way
as dawn breaks
with rain.

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Nick Coleman

Thu 15th Dec 2011 12:38

sweet content emotion sad, you take us through it succinctly

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Laura Taylor

Thu 15th Dec 2011 12:31

Ooooo that's an intriguing last verse! Interesting piece Ann

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