Miz Quickly’s 12 December 2021

he Poor Poet is by Carl Spitsweg, 1837

All The Dragons Are Slain

It’s a small view, a leaded window on sloped roofs heavy with snow, and there’s a lightness of white filling the room. He’s ashen cold, the same as yesterday, winter on winter dipping deeper into blankets. Our poet, he’ll not fight the world today, his walking stick idles against the wall. On a better day, he’d slip it under his arm, and limp into his own weight. Old injuries. War’s attention. This soldier turned pauper and poet.

No poetry or poverty is consolation for devil-claw
      hunger and cold, but he is encouraged by words

although his stove has no fuel. Choices – to freeze,
      or set flame to his ballads, and torch his rhymes.

He’ll stay in his bed, under a woollen blanket,
      a cap on his head, and his books at his side.

Hung above his bed, an umbrella hooked
      to the ceiling. It keeps away the debris,

the falling plaster and dust,
drip-on-drip of rain soaking
through the roof. Winter, it
changes the shape of rain.

His knees are bent to
support sheets of paper,
he writes, he counts on
his fingers slow syllables.

Lines scribbled on the wall
from inspired dreams,
notes, marks and words
carved like a memory.

But his dreams lack mystery,
and his dragons are all slain.


Written for Miz Quickly’s Saturday project. The instructions are too lengthy to mention here, but pop over to the Saturday prompt and join in. The image is The Poor Poet is by Carl Spitsweg, 1837. Shared with #APoemADay on Twitter   © Misky 2021

29 responses to “Miz Quickly’s 12 December 2021”

  1. This is amazing, Misky. I love the progress you make from prose to poem to poem. And so many wonderful images. There are fabulous lines in every version. Some of my favourites are:
    On a better day, he’d slip it under his arm, and limp into his own weight.

    Choices – to freeze,
    or set flame to his ballads, and torch his rhymes.

    Winter, it
    changes the shape of rain.

    his fingers slow syllables.

    It’s not a complete list but it is a summarised demonstration of how much I enjoyed it.

    Like

  2. I really enjoyed the evolution of your writing. The descriptions are really stunning. You brought the poet to life.
    I finally got around to this Quickly prompt though I did a shorter (OK I just didn’t follow the directions) version.

    Liked by 1 person

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