Room of Past Selves, a Poem Left Behind

by Larry Chamberlin   Jan 10, 2017

Leaving my bedroom sleepy and bleary
I chanced to look at the darkened spare room;
saw something there unnerving and eerie;
entering, I found silhouettes inhume
each a poem I'd posted, mourning its doom.

From cacophony brief snippets arose,
each separate shadow muttered its curse:
forever fixed in words I once composed,
life's moments dissected to rhyme diverse;
all reduced to one-dimensional verse.
["please scatter that dust on Venus or Mars."
"we live in an expanding universe"]

Every shadow shed copious tears;
they were all made of instants flash-frozen,
filtered from my days, months or even years,
articulated thoughts I had chosen
each expressed a grand mental explosion:
["love was hung on a shrike's thorn bleeding"
"hoping for painless ending. Stand frozen"]

Thousands of shades thronged from aged to youth,
brief time-slices set to looping replay;
put all together just fragments of truth
wry dusty whispers, museum displays,
specimens gathered, distilled to cliches:
["the red shift of distant lights is the blood
of Roses torn asunder their own Thorns"
"this brief glimpse, like satori fades away."]

I turned to escape from this hellish crew
with their ever repeating troubles rife
never could they grow, start living anew
with freedom of existence, joys or strife,
but remain doomed here to this counter-life:
["Ever far I have been around this world"
"not ready to sift through remnants of life."]

There was no door to be found anymore
no matter how intently I sought
all within were those that had come before,
mere insinuations best left forgot
no safe portal gave escape from my lot.
["was yearning to begin and out the door"
"protect most in your heart those you have fought"]

So here I remain beyond my consent
a shard of a sliver of a fragment
born of a moment on motionless clock
crossed o'er this threshold with uncertain walk
torn from a soul who is life's devotee
embraces the world and yearns to be free.


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Latest Comments

  • 1 year ago

    by mossgirl19

    So profound! I am in awe. Old poems, like old decisions will make us wonder why and how come...guess we were young by then.

  • 1 year ago

    by Phil

    This is good, really good. Sometimes even finished poems can be lost in time with the memories or things that helped then be written. Well done on a grand poem fella

  • 1 year ago

    by Em

    Larry, this is awesome.. Makes me wonder about all 'lost' things where do they end up etc.. These poems may be unfinished but they no less worthy of finished poems. If that makes sense. Glad its nominated as I'm all out.

  • 1 year ago

    by Brenda

    Larry, you always wonder about these poems that are never finished, snippets of thoughts jotted down, never given a full life. Doomed to forever wander, dusty pages..well done-

    • 1 year ago

      by Larry Chamberlin

      Thanks, Brenda. In this case, my waking dream was of my posted poems: however articulate they may or may not be, they are doomed to static existence while I have moved on, no longer even capable of writing "that poem" or "this one" ever again. Then, even while I was writing it down, I realized the very poem I was writing would be left in that room, finished in more ways than one.

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