Thursday, October 24, 2013

On Our Last Day

On Our Last Day

On our last day, a backyard swing
Ka-reeked and squawked. You took the ring
   I’d given you, a promise made
   Before our love began to fade
Like some forgotten sun-struck thing,

And threw it. The last day of spring—
A fine time for abandoning
   This ever-sickening masquerade.
                        On our last day,

The kids outside began to sing
Some rhyming song. (“Bye Baby Bunting”
   I think it’s called.) And while they played
   I gripped your neck and pulled the shade,
Heard Daddy’s gone a-hunting,
                        on our last day.

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Tony Maude hosts tonight's dVerse Form For All with an invitation to write a rondeau. I hadn't written this form in years, but Tony's excellent article gives the pertinent information. With so many matching rhymes the form is a challenge: R(efrain)aabba-aabR-aabbaR. I stayed pretty traditional throughout; however, I did take some slight liberties with meter in the last stanza since it seemed to fit the unsettled, degenerating mindset of the narrator. 

35 comments:

  1. a fine time for abandoning....dang. that whole middle stanza is taut with emotion...ever sickening masquerade...whoa...what a close though...mommy doesnt sound like she is going to meet her ending as well...

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    1. Thanks Brian--I let my oldest daughter read it before I sent it in; she exclaimed, "Gosh, Dad, what's WRONG with you!" I knew I had accomplished my goal.

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  2. Whew, what a dark tale ~ The second verse is specially well done ~ Good work on the form Nico~ Cheers ~

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    1. Thanks Grace--a little Halloween cheer for the end of October, I guess.

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  3. Chilling...and a fine use of the form. Well done!

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    1. Thanks Shanyn--I like the way form can be pushed and pulled in unusual ways.

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  4. Yikes - you have definitely taken this to an unexpected place! Good job! Crazy - but well done! k. (This is manicddaily).

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    1. Thanks Karin--crazy is right! While I was writing it I kept thinking of Browning's "Porphyria's Lover," one of his "Madhouse Cells" poems.

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  5. Nico, a ride on the dark side with some powerful words to pull it off so nicely...

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    1. Thanks Truedessa--it's a bit frightening how love can morph into raging hatred.

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  6. yowza! what a gorgeously wicked twist ~ M

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    1. Thanks M--wickedness can make for good poetry!

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  7. Oh you really brought this home to a dark end. The swing the children and the hunting. So much told between the lines.

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    1. Thanks Bjorn--I felt that including children at play helped set a darker mood.

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  8. Love the fact that each line follows the form, but the thoughts don't end with the line. It gives the poem a lot of depth.

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    1. Thanks Bryan--I really enjoy writing traditional forms, but I also enjoy pushing against the strictures of line. Order and chaos.

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  9. Oh dear, dear - what an outcome. A great dark tale (reminds me of Nick Cave's murder ballads).

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    1. Thanks Rowan--I grew up on country and bluegrass music, so murder ballads are near and dear to my heart!

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  10. This started off so romantically - and went quickly downhill from there, in mood not in quality ... smiles.

    I love the way you've used the stanzas to tell the different scenes in the story; and playing with the meter to indicate the increasing degeneration of the narrator's mental state is really effective.

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    1. Thanks Tony--in order to hide the fact that I struggle to write a decent romantic poem, I usually end them in murder. So far my strategy has worked!

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  11. Oh so very good and a brilliant dark (and unexpected) ending. Sometimes people just get angry...!
    Anna :o]

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    1. Thanks Anna--this is definitely not how I recommend ending a relationship!

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  12. memories are like this, sometimes sweet, sometime sour!

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    1. Thanks Vandana--maybe sometime I can try to rewrite this into a sweeter ending. That would be a fun challenge!

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  13. You had fun with this rhyming lark and made it your modern own. Wish I coud do that.
    BTW, just so you know: I have christened you Shaune Lockes.

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    1. Thanks Aprille--I did have a lot of fun with this!

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  14. Oh my... I didn't expect the ending to be that dark! It's a good job we let our dark sides out in creative form.... Your daughter's reaction is sublime! :)

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    1. Thanks Freya--I didn't expect it either!

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  15. Definitely shades of true country music (three-minute gothic novels) here. The inclusion of the kids adds to the dark tone and intensifies the grim ending. Nicely done.

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    1. Thanks V. B., I'm happy you liked it.

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  16. Wow..'bye baby bunting' took me back in time..and the darker aspect in contrast...a father leaving his children ( or could be someone in throws of pain of a relationship gone bad)...either way, a deft way of describing the angst of it all.

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    1. Thanks Katy--I've always thought the first verse to that song sounded creepy!

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  17. Oh, how cleverly you lead us up to that final revelation! A story well told, and a masterly use of the form.

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    1. Thanks Rosemary--I hoped there would be enough suspense to keep readers reading until the end!

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