Sunday, 14 September 2014

Quinnet : Claustrophobia

Folded paperwings origami art
flocked vultures coming to rest in the throat
waiting for the kill for the feast to start;
and whipsharp creases on a shrinking heart
a terrible scream that can’t find its note.

Take them off, wipe them away from their perch
stop the quickthree bound of those yellow claws.
I am the island, they the relentless surge
of slavering waves that come in greedy search
every crumb of soil pecked up by toothless maws;

toothless but keen the talons and the beak
concentric rings of claustrophobia
the drawstrings pulled too tight, breathlessly bleak
the throat spasms and stills for it must not shriek
there’s no toehold on escape over here.

Whisk me back quick to those wide-hipped mainlands
of skypink birds, honeywarm grass and sands.

I have been experimenting with variations on fixed forms :) I call this one a quinnet, a sonnet with five line stanzas instead of four.  The concluding couplet remains.  Seventeen instead of fourteen lines, prime numbers are so much more elegant :) What do you think of the form? Of the poem? and experimental verses?


  1. I haven't had the chance to experiment with the five line stanza yet. I remember you telling me to give it a go for the april challenge too! Seems a mighty long time ago. As for the poem, it is beautifully crafted as usual :) picturesque words, giving us a sneak peak to another world.

    1. It does seem a long time ago, doesn't it? Too many things happening is the cause...for me at any rate. Five is also a prime, btw :) definitely worth a shot imo. Hope all goes well with you Sabeeha.

  2. The imagery is beautiful and the overall effect is quite stunning - even more when the whole is contemplated upon the second or third reading. I got a smidge confused moving from the first to the second stanzas, but once I adjusted to the pace (and that a scream didn't emit when the vultures are removed), I settled into the poem's turbulent waters again. It's beautiful. The final lines recall longing in a way that rips through the heart before the head can follow, a breath of fresh air. Kudos!

    1. Thanks much for the detailed critique, love the i.d, btw :) Pleased you enjoyed the poetry.


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