Sunday, 18 September 2016

The Portrait of a Certain Silence



It’s not hundred percent, there’s birdcall, thinned
by the distance, the bird’s far off somewhere -
not tuneful but harsh, a throb on the wind,
the gnawing of water at the island’s fringe
a claypan of sound under the shallow layer


of silence. There are different kinds, incomplete
even when it’s peaceful outside, all tranquil;
the red noise still continues its own beat
strums its strings, digs its toes into the beach,
runs fingers down its own skin, can’t be still.





You know, I had this dream in my head of a recuperative, relaxed September after the total merry-go-round of August.  This image that I would settle down languidly on the couch every morning. The coffee mug would refill magically every hour.  And I would have written this perfect couplet by noon and then polished it till it outshone a diamond by nightfall.  Ha! Pfft! Mice, men, gang agley with a vengeance.  The image has had to be...um, revised drastically downward.

The honest truth is - the MOOC I did over summer turned out terribly addictive. Once it finished end Aug, in some weird, panicked fit of withdrawal I went and signed up for some more. So there goes 'languid' out of the window for now, no hope of getting it back into my life till November at least, when the current ones end.  I hope to work the addiction out of my system by then and get back to my 20 words a day type output. We shall see.

The good news is of course lots of stuff to read and ye olde horizons expanded, and then those long horizons might just wriggle themselves into the writing somehow I hope.  And gazillions of writing assignments, too. It all adds up, though I am not sure exactly how or up to what.

But I do have a grip on my iambs finally, I think, and may even begin to understand feet and meter and stuff like that very soon. I might even take a stab at a properly dressed sonnet in its tux standing on its own feet over here. Who knows?


Is your life languid right now?  I hope it is as languid as you want it to be.








16 comments:

  1. Just think how full your brain will be by then!
    I wonder if there's a jar that continuously fills itself with Hot Tamales...?

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    1. I wouldn't mind a self-filling jar. Or a self-filling head either...both could come in quite handy

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  2. Silence (imperfect as it is) is heart balm for me.
    Languid? Not yet. My monkey mind insists that languid is lazy, and berates me...

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    1. No, no, languid isn't lazy. Languid is an artform. Also heart balm. Essential first step to peace :)

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  3. I am always languid when I float in our pool - so I achieved a brief pause in life on this Sunday afternoon.
    Excellent poem

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    1. Your Sunday sounds relaxing! Good to have a pause button to life....glad you liked the poem, thanks.

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  4. Hi Nila - we need the brain space, and enjoy getting it filled when interest demands ... sounds like you've achieved lots though. We need to keep at things ... like birds waiting for the moment to fly away ... cheers Hilary

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    1. Hi Hilary, lucky indeed to be able to fill the brain space as and when interest demands, and totally agree that we need to keep at things...

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  5. "...digs its toes into the beach,
    runs fingers down its own skin, can’t be still." --SO gorgeous. I LOVE it.

    Languid is not a word I'd use to describe my life. Probably not ever, but especially not now. 4 kids, a book release, home schooling, house cleaning, leading a choir, working with musicians...

    I keep telling my husband I need a vacation. When Thanksgiving hits, I'll probably crash and crash hard. Until then...

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    1. No rest for authors and no rest for mums either! Best of luck with the book release..

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  6. Nice thoughts...
    After an unbelievable life, I have had rest forced upon me.

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    1. Rest sounds great, forced not so good...thanks for being here

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  7. Poetry is lovely. Have fun and put aside a resting period.

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  8. Nila, your life sounds full to overflowing, but how lovely to be that way.

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    1. Yup, much better to be too full than too empty and the devil's workshop - stress inducing for all the wrong reasons :-)

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