Lola Ridge

(December 12, 1873- May 19, 1941 / Dublin)

The Edge - Poem by Lola Ridge

I thought to die that night in the solitude where they would never find me…
But there was time…
And I lay quietly on the drawn knees of the mountain,
staring into the abyss…
I do not know how long…
I could not count the hours, they ran so fast
Like little bare-foot urchins - shaking my hands away…
But I remember
Somewhere water trickled like a thin severed vein…
And a wind came out of the grass,
Touching me gently, tentatively, like a paw.

As the night grew
The gray cloud that had covered the sky like sackcloth
Fell in ashen folds about the hills,
Like hooded virgins, pulling their cloaks about them…
There must have been a spent moon,
For the Tall One's veil held a shimmer of silver…

That too I remember…
And the tenderly rocking mountain
And beating stars…

Lay like a waxen hand upon the world,
And folded hills
Broke into a sudden wonder of peaks, stemming clear and cold,
Till the Tall One bloomed like a lily,
Flecked with sun,
Fine as a golden pollen -
It seemed a wind might blow it from the snow.

I smelled the raw sweet essences of things,
And heard spiders in the leaves
And ticking of little feet,
As tiny creatures came out of their doors
To see God pouring light into his star…

… It seemed life held
No future and no past but this…

And I too got up stiffly from the earth,
And held my heart up like a cup…

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Poem Edited: Wednesday, February 8, 2012

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