Treasure Island

Patrick White

(September l5, l948 / Campbell River, British Columbia, Canada)

This Strange Sadness Ripening In My Heart


This strange vastness ripening in my heart
that makes me ache with sorrow like a farewell
to the waterbirds in autumn though it’s only
nearing August, and the loons and the kingfishers
are far from gone. And the stars are all wrong. Why?

A new start or the beginning of giving up?
Life in death. Death in life. Fire in the tomb.
Water in the womb, or is it solely human
to go on failing your way into the unknown
trying to make a gift of a gift and all you’ve got for ribbons
are a few shadows cast like words and longing
for the mysterious silence, the unseen spirit
that bids you leave your eyes in the doorway
and enter a wholly disarming space where
the nothing you’ve become can overhear
in the formidable distance, reminiscent echoes
of who you thought you were. And a mindstream
moving like a hidden nightcreek, a pageant of images
bleeding into one another like a watercolour
being creative about its tears. An evanescent chaos
tinged with moondogs and rainbows, all the homely eternities
of an intimacy with time that never makes a promise to anyone
it can’t break like a tree in a thunderstorm.

And there in the heartwood, a calendar of the springs
that have passed like ripples of rain, grail by grail
because what makes the things of life seem holy
appears to be that they share in being as lost among us
as we are to ourselves among them. Comes a thought
like the silhouette of a bat against the moon
and then it’s gone again as if the seeing of anything
goes way beyond what it means. Gapes with significance
because of its passing away. And where within us,
for all the remoteness of our solitude could we hold it
like water and sand in our hands, without limiting
the openness we pass through like waterclocks
in a labyrinth of locks that may raise our spirits a moment
like a lifeboat on the horizon, but as things approach
three bells are ringing all’s well like a nightwatch
on a shipwreck that lost its sense of buoyancy
the seventh time down? As if the hour had marked its place
in the gills of a purple passage in its last entry in its logbook
with a golden hook like a question mark between
the first and last parentheses of its waning and waxing crescents.

Submitted: Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Edited: Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (This Strange Sadness Ripening In My Heart by Patrick White )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  9. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Without Purpose Or Reason Affixed, Lawrence S. Pertillar
  2. The Baobab Tree, I Am Krakatoa
  3. Game of chance, Aftab Alam
  4. 'Tween Love and Hatred,, Aftab Alam
  5. Life alright, hasmukh amathalal
  6. A Child Is Like A Flowering Rose, Joseph T. Renaldi
  7. Only one...1, hasmukh amathalal
  8. Caring For A Lonely Heart, Joseph T. Renaldi
  9. Play Any Tune, Neela Nath
  10. It Was the Best Day, Sandra Feldman

Poem of the Day

poet Robert Frost

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Ernest G Moll

 

Member Poem

[Hata Bildir]