(This morning I forgot
for thirty-two minutes
that this is a city made of fear.)
It is spring now, and
there are storms that crack
and crack and
but not like earth. It is spring and
the stairs that creaked and
creaked in buildings that
are gone. It's over, and
we are building kingdoms out of dust:
shatter bricks for the castle and
burdened silt for the river and
slaughtered scaffold for the moat and
fault-lined plastic people pretending
everything's alright, now, everything's
They are trying to remember
not to step on the cracks
but still admire the view.
But ask yourself:
is that kingdom strong enough to stand?
There are times when nature feels so much bigger,
when the earth and all its people quake,
when sidewalk city shadows break.
You forget about that kingdom, and
you forget about hope that moves mountains.
You watch the storm-sky flash
and the concrete burst. You watch
all rise to the sky. You mourn the stairs
that creaked, and the stairs that creaked.
When the earth and all its people quake,
when sidewalk city shadows break,
you must remember that the moon does not have to be full
for you to love it.
You must remember that you exist;
and no one taught you how to survive
but you're doing it anyway; and light spills
from your bones, and soon, like an avalanche,
there will be enough light to light this whole kingdom.
It is spring now,
it is two springs after winter.
So shake the frost from your ankles
Run for those who have heart.
Run for the ghosts that call from the kingdom
to retrieve arms of hope,
the ghosts that call
'please stay alive.'
Refuse to sink.
(Sometimes I forget
that this is a city made of fear
and remember how to hold on
For two years of earthquakes -
4 September 2010 - 2012
(With any luck, the last earthquake poem I will write.)
The author of this piece has the ability to captivate me with her excellent word display. This poem touched me deeply. I could feel the tragedy within her writing.... It's very difficult to make the reader feel along with each word and I found this poem to be brilliant in my eyes.
Truly a powerful nature poem and yet I'm glad she chose to place it in the sad genre, for she touched upon her sorrow of the tragedy itself in such a way that is mesmerizing to the reader. I admire who way of formatting this poem and the inspiration to keep on living and surviving in the end was very powerful. This poem deserves to be highlighted in so many ways... Wonderful piece of poetry!
5 years ago
Although this is borne out of a terrible phenomenon, it is beautiful. I have just become a fan.
Why does this poem have the least comments/votes out of the three winners? I can really find some inner beauty in this write, some lines were really intriguing. This won't be the last time I read it, because I've never read a poem about an earthquake, this is absolutely new.
"you must remember that the moon does not have to be full
for you to love it."
Beautiful, beautiful lines. Very simple and metaphorical. I think I envy you for writing it :)
I love the opening and ending in your poem though I don't truly understand how you wanted to connect them to fear? Is it like, when an earthquake hits the city becomes drowned in fear? Forgive my simple mind.
This is a really good write and I really really admire the issue you tackled here, I love it when I see poems about completely different things than love and sadness in this site :)
I know I hadn't commented on much of your work, but I sure have been reading them and everytime I'm even more impressed by the creativity of your images, language and imagination.
I'm a fan of repetition myself as well as opening and ending phrases with a twist, you do them quite well. If i were to pick one thing I didn't like about this, I'd say it's the usuage of the word "kingdom". I don't know why but it seemed too dreamy for the piece perhaps, or too out of the mood and tone of the image you've been creating.