Friday, January 6, 2017

Rachael Mead #1

New Year’s Day

The sun falls this morning
on the green roof of leaves.

I walk on a carpet of needles  
from the wild summer storm.

On the far side of the world
it is still last year.  It’s arbitrary,

I know, marking this lap of the sun.
Yet each year I’m far from kind,

to the self I’m approaching,
tying her to tasks, loading her

shoulders with expectations.
The warm air fills with pine.

The dog lies in the sun. The cat
sleeps away her morning.

It seems to me they are pleased
to be a dog, a cat, to be sleeping.

In my imagination, they desire 
nothing more than to eat, to run,

perhaps to have my company.
Who knows? Perhaps they lie awake

while I sleep, wondering what
on earth they are doing here.

I shake off time and tradition.
Right now, I want nothing more

than to walk, quiet and soft,
on the fragrant duff of the trees,

to lay my wild body down in the grass,
and lift my face to the pass of the sun,

the old muscle of my heart beating,
beating out its love for this world.


  1. Great poem, Rachael. I love the message, insights, diction and structure.

  2. what about:

    The sun falls on the green
    roof of leaves. This morning

    I walk on a carpet of needles
    from the wild summer storm.

    nothing else to notice except that, as Nathanael already mentioned, it's a lovely poem!

    1. Thanks so much Beatrice - that is a brilliant suggestion. That first stanza really wasn't sitting well with me and I think you've nailed the problem and solution!

  3. All of the above, Rachel. A fine poem. Gentle, so gentle. Quiet. At peace. But I wonder what it is in me that would like more tension... :)

    1. Hi Rob - yes, me too. It's a slow start to the year poetry-wise and I'm really not that happy with it yet. Yes to more tension. Yes to significant revision. First drafts; the gifts that keep on giving! ;)

  4. you know I reckon you could leave the last three words off the last line with no ill whatsoever and get a higher impact from the love beating in the heart of this poem, if you don't mind the suggestion.
    The 'fragrant duff of trees" gives such a sweetness there.

    1. Thanks so much Kerri - that's a really good suggestion, throwing a bit of ambiguity into the mix at the last second. I'll definitely toss that around. Cheers!

  5. Really lovely delicate poem, Rachel. I agree with all comments - especially Kerri’s - for this world is implicit and a final line needs a tiny bit of drama (there’s a tiny intimation of death in ‘beating out’ which softens the sweetness perfectly). It’s almost not worth mentioning it’s so minor but I’d remove the comma after “kind” - fourth stanza - it slows us down when we don’t need slowing.

  6. Thanks Magdalena and yes, definitely worth mentioning that comma. Why did I ever think that was needed there? Thanks so much for the close reading - very much appreciated!

  7. to me this feels like a v finished poem
    (not to discount all the worthy suggestions)!