That summer when sweet dew was on the rose
she danced and played along the merry lane
while mother hummed a tune and hung the clothes.
Yet ill winds soon would spin the weather vane.
A stranger from Bigtown, in fancy clothes,
arrived and said he’d traveled on the train.
Slack-jawed and bug-eyed, looked just like a toad.
His coin purse jangled; oh, could he retain
a man to portage trunks to Pleasant Row?
Her father, with six mouths to feed, said yea.
In guileless joy jumped on the cart, unknown
that darkness preyed upon another’s brain.
Next morning’s dawn bloomed pink with eerie glow
as father said the man did need a maid
and after feeding wee ones she should go
to Pleasant Row to serve “the toad” all day.
As dusk began to dust the day’s rainbows
A clumping ‘crost the porch spurred a refrain,
“I wonder with her coins how many loaves?”
Until they saw her stooped and crumpled frame.
How many times have “Lolitas” been portrayed as devious temptresses to the poor predator who just can’t help himself? I decided to tell the truth of the matter of how many youngsters, male and female, have their souls detached at best or extinguished at most at the hands of evil. Death comes in many forms. As Dolores went to bed that night, she was already a corpse.
The following song is written by Chester Bennington of Linkin Park. Chester ended his own life in 2017. He was a victim of childhood sexual abuse. Although the victim in the video is portrayed as female, I have got to wonder if Chester was writing about his own childhood experience.
Laura is today’s host at dVerse’ Poetics. Laura says:
….Select ONE phrase from these famous departing words
- “All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain” -Roy Batty, Blade Runner
- “My battery is low and it’s getting dark” – Mars rover ‘Opportunity’
- “A certain butterfly is already on the wing.” Vladimir Nabokov
- “I must go in for the fog is rising” Emily Dickinson
- “Ah! The times were good! It was I who was so unhappy”. Sophie Arnould, French operatic soprano
- “My anchor is well cast, and my ship, though weather-beaten, will outride the storm” Samuel Hopkins, theologian
- “Go on, get out! Last words are for fools who haven’t said enough.” Karl Marx
Then using your chosen phrase:-
- Write a ‘deathbed’ poem of your own imagination (time and place optional!)
- It does not have to pertain to the author of your chosen words but can do
- You could include backstory, personality, remembrances, other people present
- Make it sad, funny, sudden, expected, personal or remote
- read Billy Collins’ “Deathbeds” poem – it sets all sorts of scenes
Your poem may take any form and that includes a prose poem
OR (for those who like an extra challenge)
Write in elegiac stanzas i.e quatrains with the rhyme scheme ABAB written in iambic pentameter.
N.B Remember to cite the author of those last words if you use it within your poem or as title. Alternately you could cite it as epigraph