423b2e
423b2e

1.15.2013

variation on the word sleep




Variation On the Word Sleep
~ Margaret Atwood

I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head

and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear

I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center. I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and you enter
it as easily as breathing in

I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
& that necessary.

xxx

12 comments:

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Me too.

goatman said...

She is masterful.
I like the first person telling. Many of her novels read as such.

Lee said...

And me....

I like Atwood's writings, too.

red dirt girl said...

I love the difference a comma makes in the first two lines of this poem. With that said, I echo the 'me too' and whole heartedly agree with goatman's 'masterful'.

I, too, like the first person telling and just read a very interesting essay on the difference POV makes in a poem. The poet/author suggests that it is a good exercise to change the POV in your poems and see if it changes the poems' integrity and/ or meaning.

Interesting ....

xxx

red dirt girl said...

Here it is:

http://sbeasley.blogspot.com/2012/12/risk-point-of-view.html

at Chicks Dig Poetry by Sandra Beasley

xxx

Adullamite said...

Wake me at 6:30

goatman said...

Having been unintentionally in the army, POV was "Privately Owned Vehicle" -- as in the Goat. Threw me off . . .

But "Point of View" will fit as a poetic gimmic, although I was kind of hoping for an example.

red dirt girl said...

Adullamite - I hope you are talking about 6:30 in the evening ....... :)

xxx

red dirt girl said...

I guess privately owned vehicle would throw one off ...

Hmmm.... examples:

He would like to watch you sleeping, which may not happen.
He would like to watch you,
sleeping. He would like to sleep with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over his head


3rd person reads sort of creepy to me ??!

You would like to watch me sleeping, which may not happen.
You would like to watch me,
sleeping. You would like to sleep with me, to enter
my sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over your head


2nd person is ... less creepy but still lacks the intimacy of first person. 'You' puts up a wall between 'you' and 'me'....

xxx

goatman said...

Seems pretty "gimmicky"; that is why I don't attend writing classes.
("The Sun" is getting to the place where their stories are obvious products of those writing seminars.
I remain unimpressed. Why not just hire computers (or a bunch of monkeys) and a lot of time, to do it for you?

gz said...

to be with one sleeping is awesome.
to lie relaxed and listen.

a good poem

red dirt girl said...

Amen, gz!

xxx