A short narrative poem by Alyssa Wright about someone practicing rock climbing.
A glance up,
A glance down inverts my stomach.
First the right hand, then the left.
Now the right foot, now the left.
On and on and on,
Up and up and up
I go, looking down no more.
The bell! Yes, the bell!
Ring, ring, ring!
Triumphantly, I rappel down the side
of the rock climbing wall.
A short narrative poem by Alyssa Wright about a songbird who sings of Death, Nightmare, and Danger.
The Songbird sang her sonnet,
A darkly melodious tune, tinted
by ominous and haunting swoons.
Soon she’s found herself an audience,
drawn by her curious tune:
He draws nigh,
He comes close
In the night,
Coming by to
Bear you home.
It is of Death she does so speak,
though Death’s duration she cannot leak.
Her sonnet moves on with her enraptured watchers,
Singing first again of Death then moving
To hauntingly mention Nightmare.
Then darkening her tone with the twilight,
her melody moans of Danger’s lurking near.
Enraptured becomes terrified and gone-all are the listeners,
just as Songbird finishes her last moon.
The clouds-turned-fire were
A provoked red,
Tendrils flowing from
Gold and Purple
Shredded robes as
Today’s king had fallen;
Tomorrow another would rise.
A fine, gritty powder
beneath my feet,
A cool, wet, salty foam
lapping at my ankles,
A wetting yet thirsty spray
breathed into my mouth and nose,
A rhythmic whoosh, impatient yet calm
echoing through my ears,
A bright yellow light and soft green-blue
colored in my mind by my eyes.
I would like to go back to bed,
As early as it is,
for last night
I didn’t sleep
Not even a wink,
as the cliche goes.
It wasn’t even insomnia,
per se, just discomfort.
I tried to sleep,
I really did.
But I tossed and turned,
Longing for the comfort
of my own bed
and later lamenting
the lack of a door and walls
Around the couch
To block out the noise
from my brothers in the kitchen.
A short narrative poem by Alyssa Wright about Robin Hood’s first attempt at thievery.
The time had come when
Stealth was now an order,
thought from whom cannot be said.
This was the test,
Would he be able to put into practice
all that he had prepared?
The archery was surely safe,
no contest to be found.
Sure-footed, strong, senses heightened,
He was ready for the job.
Up a wall,
In a window,
Past the guards,
Through the door,
Reach under the pillow,
Grab the key,
Run out the door, down the hall,
Turn the corner,
Unlock the vault,
Steal the treasure.
Before the night was gone,
the treasure was no longer in his hands,
Having been delivered through the windows
of the houses of the poor.
This narrative poem was originally written in January 2015.
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A fictional narrative poem by Alyssa Wright about the traveler mentioned in Walter de la Mare’s “The Listeners.”
I purposefully misspelled the word traveler to reflect an archaic spelling. This poem is a response to Walter de la Mare’s “The Listeners.” I originally wrote this in November 2014.
The people of the house’ve gone crazy,
An uproar found at every turn;
The Traveller’s come to visit,
The curious mister’s come!
Whyever could he be here,
How long will he stay?
The people are all anxious
To find out just the same.
So they call a meeting,
Ment’ning the Traveller’s name.
“He should make a promise, to prove that
He is safe, he means no harm or folly
To come upon our sons.”
“Whyever such a promise?
Such thing I cannot prove,
For folly is of something that I find does amuse.”
“So you say you’ll bring us harm?
Or that you are cruel?”
“For, nay, I say, but this I cannot prove.”
“If you bring us an object, a thing of a
Rare find, and in pristine condition,
Just as how you find [it];
We will grant you trust and invite,
No ridicule here for you, Traveller.”
He shook his head,
“I will be back, if not but soon.
This ‘fact of old possibly with me.
But know that I am coming,
Coming upon you thus:
I won’t send a warning, day or night,
I’ll show up and expect a welcome,
But not accept lavish gifts and such.”
So he left, the Traveller.
The peace returned to overwhelm that house,
For they had grown used to having
That Traveller about.
But as the days had gone,
With no sign of his return,
They all started [to] grow weary [of] wishing Traveller home.
The years grew long and fin’lly,
Those first old men burnt out,
Left the house to their young sons.
Still yet more time went by,
The Traveller not about,
All [the] boys and girls of [the] old house
Thinking he was but a story their
Dads had told them all but full of flout.
When finally the people of that house had
All gone out,
There came upon the place — the Traveller,
His promise yet unfulfilled.
So the house was full of phantoms,
Those men we spoke about,
List’ning to the Traveller
Say he’d brought the promised gift.