Slivers of Necessity

He made a choice
to leave.

He walks with suitcase
on a lead, battered
muddy, frayed airline
barcode still stuck to its handle.

He avoids the biggest potholes
on the road, an avenue
of once-belching factories
now brownfields.

The half-light of the evening,
whispers, ‘find a corner
before it’s too late
draw paper shutters tight’.

Slivers of necessity
push upon his temple.

Snails slither horns erect,
a patch of mustard weed
delicious evening meal
he stops to watch.

He remembers frenzied soldiers
on a spiral staircase.

A stone by a drain grows
four feet and a reptile head,
he shakes his head in disbelief,
listens for the angry wolf.

He trips into a slimy pothole,
hears the lullaby of frogs.

Through a crack crowned
with razor wire, he edges
careful not to break his skin;
a door half open beckons.

Necessity’s bounty provides
refuge for the night.


Open Link Night – Week 9

23 thoughts on “Slivers of Necessity

  1. Oh! this is heartbreaking!

    I was thinking of WWI soldier, shell shock, love shock…it is so evocative of so many possibilities.

    Brilliant nonetheless.

    Lady Nyo

  2. makes me wonder what is in this guys suitcase…not tryign to be funny but as an extended metaphor for the baggage we carry…esp as his night gets so surreal….

  3. A most dark and eerie mood in this one, marousia, some sort of post traumatic shock, for sure, yet he seems to reflect a landscape and world as sick as he is. Fine piece.

  4. This is incredible and somehow feels the weight of life’s burdens carried for years in some of the symbolism. Very well written…very…I think so many of us carry a lot into these kinds of emotions, as the world isn’t an easy one…sometimes we think we can carry the weight of the world upon our shoulders…yet as individuals there is the knowledge we can’t fix everything as much as we’d like to…there is so much in this in every form…and as always so descriptive we can see the visions surrounding his world….excellent

  5. I’ve been waiting for you to write this one ~ & now, five minutes after reading it, I can feel your poem still pulsing inside me. Your opening words drew me in immediately: ‘he made a choice to leave’ … and despite all the incredible imagery in your poem it is that first line that resonates. ‘Did he?’ I keep asking myself, ‘did he really have a choice?’ This is an incredibly powerful poem and it is one which I wish I owned in a book so that I might keep coming back to it. It intrigues me and touches me deeply. I wonder if you could be persuaded to include it in the Grass Roots book? Having said that I believe this poem would stand more than a fighting chance in any top-drawer poetry competition. Absolutely wonderful write Marousia.

  6. The reader is troubled from the start. Interesting that you call the poem Slivers of Necessity and then at the end you mention Necessity’s Bounty. Irony, I suppose. What baggage we all carry. Beautifully done, M.!

  7. Necessity is wedded to time
    Ananke and Khronos
    Weaving our fates
    Rolling our lives
    Into coils of Razor wire

    Yet I choose to see it differently
    I see three sisters
    Older than time
    Tired of endless days
    They close their eyes tightly

    Their sighs long for surcease
    Yet we show them our lives
    That repeat so endlessly
    Continuous spirals of continuity
    That drive the fates to madness

    They turn their vision to the sun
    Our lives spin heedlessly on
    Eggshell lives of light and yolk
    Breaking endlessly to slivers
    Shivers of shadowy compulsion

    No need to compel obedience
    We follow our downward path
    As if our lives depended on it
    We know the destination sure
    In the river of our scarred lives

    Yet these words too are lies
    Seeking to trap and ensnare
    I too look at the sun
    Its’ brightness burns with truth
    More painful than darkness

    Yet I cannot look away
    For ensnared by this vision
    I am surely lost
    To the shades of dark
    That would claim my soul


    Thanks for your poem
    Such extraordinary words
    Of dark inspiration
    Deeply bow I
    To your spirit

  8. beautiful images……I like the pot hole analogy… This is not related but I once had a daily commute of about 25 miles through deep, deep woods of Arkansas. There was a spot on that journey, possibly a small pond or body of water hidden, where the sound of small frogs chirping, not croaking but chirping, just absolutely filled the air… There must have been thousands and thousands of them… I looked forward to passing that spot everyday because that sound was like a chorus, angelic…… not like any other frogs I’ve ever heard…. Your lullaby of frogs just totally took me there……

  9. Pingback: Flowers of Darkness | Full Moon Tea

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