Tuesday, March 5, 2019

the silent hour

I failed to see the hour of the sunset
In silent room, where vase of marigold
promises spring & stories untold
Your hands are still, pickled by distress

In silent room, where vase of marigold
hides from fury & sorrow no one can address
Your hands are still now, pickled by distress
It is time to weep & fold

And hide this fury - this sorrow -no one can address 
I refrain from gathering stones, my chest is cold 
Is it time to weep & fold
Remembering the times of cheers & guesses

I refrain from gathering,  stones in my chest are cold
Numbed by promises of spring & stories untold
Remembering the times of cheers & guesses
I failed to see the hour of the sunset

Posted for dVerse Poets Pub - Hosted by Lillian.  The poetic form is Pantoum.   Please give your constructive feedback as this is my first time to compose a poem in this form.  I am not sure if my last stanza is correct.

Inspired by Tuesday's poetics, Turn, turn, turn:

For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven:  a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. 

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 American Standard Version (ASV)


  1. There is something ominous about those lines of missing the sunset. I also like the line about not gathering stones.

  2. I LOVE the content, Grace....and the change in punctuation which adds different layers to similar words.
    I think there is an error in the final stanza for a pantoum:

    A (has to end rhyme with C)
    B (has to end rhyme with D)

    B (exact same line as B in first stanza; has to end rhyme with D)
    E (has to end rhyme with F)
    D (exact same line as D in first stanza)

    E (exact same line as E in second stanza)
    G (has to rhyme with H)
    F (exact same line as F in second stanza)

    G (exact same line as G in third stanza)
    C (exact same line as C in first stanza)
    H (exact same line as H in third stanza)
    A (exact same line as A in first stanza)

    Hope this helps. BUT -- I really love it in terms of meaning and flow the way you have it! :)

    1. Thanks Lillian. I thought we can also go with ABBA. Oh well, time to edit.

    2. Rhyming is not absolutely necessary, but I see Lillian's point about the order when you use it.
      Also, regarding the pantoum, Wikipedia may say, “the meaning of lines shifts when they are repeated although the words remain exactly the same: this can be done by shifting punctuation, punning, or simply recontextualizing,” but I’ve seen many instances where this more than simple punctuation changes - even rephrasing a repeated line, which you’ve done here.

      poets.org says something similar and gives examples:

      The same can be seen in examples at The Poetry Foundation:


  3. This is lovely... the way the pantoun repetition actually makes me think how deep the sorrow cuts...

  4. This speaks of almost debilitating sorrow. Well written.

  5. I enjoyed the poem, embracing the sorrow; as to the exact form of pantoum, a lot of us struggled with it. Yours could be a modern version. Hurrah for diving in; the water's salty.

  6. Grace, your pantoum puts tears in my eyes, as bev said, a feeling of debilitating sorrow. The last line says so much.

  7. I loved this, such a powerful picture of grief.

  8. You did a wonderful use of the poetic form. Well done Grace.

  9. I am new at using this form too, Grace, so no help there. I like your use of the '&' - quite effective the way you have repeated it.

  10. love your theme Grace especially the marigold which signifies grief and a time to fold. i read Lillian's comment - you can do ABBA but it wasn't done throughout this poem and that may make the final stanza seem a little disjointed. i see other poets creating their own rhyming schemes which occasionally work. the heart of the pantoum is the rhyming and interlocking lines and connecting first and last line, so whichever lines you chose to repeat would be fine as long as it rhymed. hope i made sense here!

  11. I love how you have woven words from the quote into your pantoum, Grace, and how the whole poem is tinged with sadness: the marigold’s promises, the cold stones in the chest, and time to weep and fold rather than gather. I remember failing to see the hour of the sunset.

  12. Failing can sometimes be the best, or not.

  13. The stillness and silence you create really echo the dusk. How sudden light can be gone.
    I think the pantoum form is flexible, although many disagree. You've got repetition and the first and last lines repeat. That works for me.

  14. I'm no expert on pantoum form but i think the repetition is effective in conveying reaction to an unexpected death.

    But the idea of "pickled"is disturbing, is that the word you intended, Grace?

  15. You've captured the sorrow of learning too late, left with no recourse.

  16. I'm no expert in the pantoum, but the pathos of the poetry sings! Wonderful write!

  17. I failed to see the hour of the sunset. - I love this line. I experience this poem as being full of love and grief in layers. This is really well written.

  18. Time iS iLLuSioN
    Twilight is Forever
    Now When We Miss Time
    PS.. Sounds Like Madness For Folks Who Do not Arrive at the Present Party

  19. I wrote a longer comment, but Google ate it. I think your poem is perfect in its imperfection and conveys longing and loss extremely well.

  20. I like this. The emotion of your pantoum built with the stanzas so much so that in the last stanza, I sense emotions about to boil over. THus, even with the repeating lines, your pantoum does not feel repetitive at all. :-)

  21. I can feel the intensity of stillness at the center. Waiting.

  22. There is an underlying layer of sadness, heaviness in this poem of beautiful imagery. I like how you varied the repetition of the lines.


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