I should have taken that course, the one with the guy who builds drystone walls up north for the farmers who have to maintain things the way they’ve always been. A bit like how I’m still trying to keep this how it was when you laid each slab in place one, against the other, so clever with your fingers, finding the flattest stones, the edges most like jigsaw pieces, and stacking the pile till it looked like a skyscraper even if it always was only a folly.
I’ve just taken part in Caroline Bird’s Brave Writing poetry workshop, so I was a little worried I’d be all poet’d out by the time I got round to the DVerse prompt for this evening. It was an amazing workshop and I feel like a got so much out of it, much as I did with the workshop I did last year run by Mark Pajak. Workshops are a great way to improve your poems and your craft.
Also, my poem When Medusa Goes Shopping went live on The Daily Drunk today! I think this is the first poem I’ve had published in 2020. After writing my collection I felt a bit like I’d run out of poems, and it’s only been in the last couple of months that I really started got the fire back in my belly when it comes to writing.
Since tonight’s prompt is Follies, I’d like to mention Hawkstone Park Follies. It’s a lovely site in Shropshire, built originally by the Hill family, and a local tourist attraction. The family built it as a pleasure garden (eighteenth century gardens designed for noble families to go walking in) and as a result the Follies boast fantastic sandstone caves, a hermitage, and the obelisk which is not actually an obelisk but a monument to the supposed first protestant mayor of London. (Supposed, the claim is a little contested). For those who enjoy walking it’s a fantastic place to visit (though only open between 1st July and 1st November). I’d highly recommend not doing it dressed as the Easter Bunny however. There are some steep bits.
Fireworks popping off underneath skin, an explosions against the brickwork. Blood so bright it burns my retinas and when I dreamed I can see it, the splash, the sizzle of colour. My own fists tight as un-popped corks deep in my dressing gown pockets, buried under lint and hidden things, like the sound of bone crack on plasterboard, always plasterboard, this fuse pulled taught between my shoulders unlit and your face so dark with thunder the crash of it in a plate on the kitchen floor, slowly starts to clear.
I feel like I need to preface this poem with the fact that it is not a description of a real event, or specifically based on one real individual. We’ve had sporadic fireworks for the last couple of weeks, so if anything, those are the main source of inspiration. Right with that out of the way, here’s an audio recording of the poem, and a note to say go and check out the rest of the poems written for tonight’s DVersePoets sound prompt.
Gutted and skinned, the rabbit seemed tiny. It was too young, but the other snares were empty, and night crept upon them before Gart could hunt the woods.
Devlin boned the little creature, and carved it up into rough chunks. Enough so that there would be a piece or two each in the stew. Gart watched him across the fire and when he stood, Devlin called another of the men to watch the pot.
Away from camp, Gart’s tracks faded, along with the sound of voices.
‘You’re improving,’ said Gart, his lean form rising from a crouch just inches away. He snaked a hand inside Devlin’s collar and brought the younger man closer. ‘I will make you moan like an autumn wind high in the lonesome treetops,’ he whispered, his grip tightening.
‘After,’ Devlin promised.
‘Ever after,’ said Gart. ‘From tonight, until the end.’
Lillian has selected two lines from Carl Sandburg’s Jazz Fantasia for the writers at the pub to chose between tonight. I went with the first option “moan like an autumn wind high in the lonesome treetops”.