Elegy For A Man And His Land

 

This is how the world will end:

Not with a bang but a whimper.

  T.S. Eliot, "The Hollow Men"

 

 

Time and space being relative,

Here each seems to have ended

Where a fence leans into nothing,

 

Keeping nothing in nor out now,

Whatever once here having gone

The way of the barn, its bare bones

 

Half-buried in a pasture wild again

With tall weeds and prairie grass,

Old seed sacks of mice and dust.

 

The fence staggers on and then

Simply stops, limping wires rusty

And the posts more holding on

 

Now than holding up, as though

They had forgotten where it was

They had been going and why.

 

Such emptiness no longer seems

A place but a permanent past, some

Dimension beyond any measuring.

 

But between a fence post and wire

A spider web holds them together

And from it, a single thin thread

 

From which hangs a white moth,

Desiccated body slowly swinging

Like a pendulum, its hollow husk

 

A tiny ticking against the leaning

Post, a clock running down, both

Time and space slowing into silence.





Poetry by countryfog
Read 481 times
Written on 2015-06-23 at 19:19

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josephus The PoetBay support member heart!
Once in a while I am struck by the consummate skill you have as a poet and philosopher. This is one of those times. This one has left me awed.
2015-06-28


Jamsbo Rockda The PoetBay support member heart!
You paint a wonderful picture with words. You make it feel quite eerie and strange. The reference to the moth in the web adds to this. The T.S. Eliot intro is very apt. It all ends in silence.
2015-06-25


Coo & Co The PoetBay support member heart!
Yes indeed, the attention to detail is exquisite! I love the description of the wild pasture. Decay is interesting to me I find the bare bones of the barn and the rusting fence very beautiful. And the desiccated moth is gorgeous, of course. I imagine it speeding up again as a breeze blows through the fields, though that is not appropriate for the poem, of course.
Sage Coo apologises for that final thought and we applaud together.
2015-06-25



One thing (among many) I really like about your poems is the meticulous attention to detail. We not only see the white moth dangling in the wind on the spider's web, we see it thoroughly, hear it (ticking like the pendulum of a clock), and ultimately feel it--the lonely wasteland of the abandoned farm.

Top-notch writing.
2015-06-24


Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
Very well done, Fog. The ending, the moth's carcass ticking time, is just amazing, as is,

The fence staggers on and then
Simply stops, limping wires rusty
And the posts more holding on

Now than holding up, as though
They had forgotten where it was
They had been going and why.

Sounds a little like some of us old guys on PoetBay, doesn't it?
2015-06-24



This is eloquent and so true. I enjoyed the truth in this.
Ashe
2015-06-23