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Saturday 16 June 2012

Love's Last Opportunity

(Opportunity being the key word in this week's Thursday Think Tank #101 at http://poetryblogroll.blogspot.co.uk/ )

Let us go back for a moment,
hand-in-hand as we were, you and I,
the year we first built our castles of sand,
first saw the ocean rise in its fury,
first talked of abroad.
How you shone like early light on the sea!
How you shimmered with glee!
Back then was some happy,
and all the happy there was
was between us.

How could we know that our ocean,
the ocean we said we would cross
together, was also between us, the crossing not pleasure,
but a dream to be chosen or not,
the choice strictly ours, now laid out between
the ocean and happy?
Why did we choose as we did?

Don't look: we are back for this moment together,
face to face and across
the landscape remembered, dragged out from the ocean of time,
unexpectedly brought here together,
waves cutting us off from our prime.
We may never again
be now or be then to unsing the song of that time
or give ear to the song that remains in the waves,
tumbled and turned and churned against cliffs
that will crumble to dust in the foam and its mist.

You said you would fly -
Look! There is the swing where I pushed you
so high! And you laughed. Then:
Throw me beyond the horizon! you called
as some engine somewhere that drove us was stalled
and nothing was left of us then but the words:
words in their thousands, words more than the stars
words that we'd strung to infinity, words
not making sense. Something to trip on, to break arm or neck.
A trap, a disaster, a threat, total wreck.
Let's pick up the pieces, clear up the beach -
and see what we left and is still within reach.


Brian Miller said...

wow rather dramatic flourish there in the end, but also hope...and in sifting through the pieces sometimes you can find something worth salvaging...

David Cranmer said...

"... and see what we left and is still within reach." Enjoyed that ending, Dave.

Cait O'Connor said...


Mary said...

Of your recent poems, this is a favorite. The ocean that we would cross together is also between us...so often seems to be true. And who knows why people choose, and how people eventually come to be in one place or another; but, yes, pieces CAN be picked up, and there are always things within reach if people strive...together.

Tabor said...

This poem has a romantic and lyrical quality that is different from your other poems.

Tommaso Gervasutti said...

One of your best Dave, with a lyric intensity to be savoured and reread.
Actually I will keep it among my favourites.
I wonder if the very beginning echoes Prufrock intentionally or by chance?

Anonymous said...

It stunned me actually.
I wasn't expecting it.
It's beautiful.
It's deep and melodic and startling;

Throw me beyond the horizon!

...and so thoughtful.

It's pretty too, with all those images.

it has energy and breath - I really enjoyed it.

I've only just fallen in love - one year - and here I find wisdom of ages.

Thank you.

Hannah said...

I love this!!! I found the first two stanzas to be especially dance-able...When reading aloud the motions that can come from acting out the song so to speak are very easy to conjure. Great writing...
"we are back for this moment together,
face to face and across
the landscape remembered, dragged out from the ocean of time,
unexpectedly brought here together,"

I like the way this flows and I enjoy the inner rhyme that comes in the end! Smiles!

Dave King said...

Yes, much thanks for this.

It's the recycling obsession, it gets us all! Good to know you liked. Thanks.

Thanks. Much appreciated.

A little surprising, I must say, but very welcome, thanks for saying. Fascinating questions, you put - the sort that tend to propogate more questions of their own.

Interesting. I thought that - after I'd written it. Not wholly intended, though. Thanks for saying that you felt it.

Thanks once more for such kind thoughts. Prufock: pure chance - except, perhaps, that I know the poem so well, the words and rhythms are almost a part of me.

Hi, a warm welcome to you. Thank you for visiting and for your very kind words. They are much valued.

This is really very much appreciated, not just the complimentary words, but the explanation of them. Thank you so much.

A Cuban In London said...

It's always nice to read pieces that are inspired by the sea. The only regret I have is that London is not by the sea. And the Thames is no substitute for the ocean. I agree with Hannah, there's a dance-able nature to the whole poem. Like waves breaking on the shore. Competing to see which one jumps the highest.

Greetings from London.

Dave King said...

A Cuban in London
I agree with you that The Thames is no substitute for the sea!
Thanks for this, though. Most valued.

Ygraine said...

The nostalgia in this piece is palpable - is collective, will stir something in the memory of anyone who has ever loved.

The sense of loss it conveys is utterly heart-wrenching.
It certainly brought a tear to my eye!

Anonymous said...

That last stanza tied it all up for me, wonderful.

Madeleine Begun Kane said...

I wasn't expecting that ending, and yet it made such perfect sense. Beautifully done.

Anonymous said...

Hello Dave King (Pics and Poems)

forgive me for using comments on ‘about’ on your blog AND email we NEVER do, except for the people we would like to feature on the 'Ten of the Best' Blog. Please remove this from your comments after you’ve read it!

The reason I write to you, is that we would be very honoured to carry your piece ‘LOVE’S LAST OPPORTUNITY’ (http://picsandpoems.blogspot.com/2012/06/loves-last-opportunity.html) You can find the website here - http://tenofthebestshortpoetry.wordpress.com

Of course we need your permission to do so, and I hope you will give it to us.
We have no regulations as far as copyright is concerned, all rights rest with you unconditionally.

Also, we blog the entire Ten of the Best for the month under it’s own URL and as a grouping so that your poem will not appear with it’s own URL and will form far less than automated searches for duplicated work on the internet require – info for you if you are familiar with the way the internet works.

This is so that appearing on Ten of the Best does not interfere in anyway how you chose to use the poem – beyond it appearing on your blog as it does.

If you accept, we would like to know if you have a particular image you would like us to consider with your piece, if we can use what you already have (we will check for copyright issues ourselves so you are not held responsible), or if you'd prefer to see what we think your piece inspires!

Also, if you can write a VERY short bio - like 2 lines, in anyway that you want, with whatever information that you would like to give of yourself, for us to tag onto the end of the poem, we would be grateful - along with the website that you'd like readers to be directed to if you feel you would appreciate their direct traffic.

We very much are of the opinion that your poem is clearly one of Ten of the Best we have seen this month.

Please let us know when you can,