A Little New One

I was playing around with alliteration and with what might with a little more effort and work have become prose poetry a while back (sorry for the pretentiousness of that — as though there werenʼt any other all-pervading stink of pretension throughout this blog). As I finished creating the post, finding the long-buried pictures (actually taken back in July) and forging those luscious links I love so much, reviewing my spelling and punctuation (usually too cursorily and quickly), I remembered that I had actually written a little piece of description early in the summer that I had at least thought of as a poem, disregarding whether it is one or not. As the only bit of verse I have written on my own during the course of the blog (so far, let us hope), I thought I would put it up in this environment today.

Like several other primarily descriptive verses I have developed, this one arose from a suddenly transfixing moment of observation (generally speaking, I look but donʼt actually see all that much, not the best practice for one who wants to be a writer). The moon appearing in the daytime sky isnʼt all that unusual, although normally taken for granted, by me and the rest of the world. However, back on June 22, as I went outdoors (to get the mail, I think), I looked up, straight ahead of me in the southern sky to see a full moon looking fragmentary and slightly dim in the daytime brilliance — its craters the same shade as the sky itself (or some of them), as though the acidic force of the blue were eating away at the cold white of the lunar disk (one of the phrases I tried and rejected made the moon a decayed hockey puck, though not in those many words, but close enough for rejection).

I stopped on the driveway and just gazed at it, and the start of the incomplete piece of verse I am putting below began bubbling in my mind. I kept looking for possibly a whole minute, thinking of words pretty vaguely and not quite consciously, then started to the mailbox. The clear idea the moon was disintegrating or evaporating (like an ice cube! I wondered) came up as I walked (our box is all the way across our neighborʼs length of yard, right beside theirs at the end of their driveway:  one of the huge accomplishments in the days after my hernia surgery back in early June of 2001 was actually shambling out the front door and carefully, both feet securely onto a step before reaching one of them down to the next, getting down to the driveway, hobbling all the way to the street and then to the mailbox in the middle of an afternoon — our mail arrives late in the day — and not being entirely certain I had the energy to get back home and inside; but I did — that day I donʼt think I even thought to glance up and see if there was a moon fragment deliquescing for my imagination).

I donʼt recall now how long it took me this recent summer day to pull out the big red notebook, in which I was working on a section of “Mistakes by Moonlight,” and on a fresh page scratch down the lines below. I believe it was that same Tuesday afternoon, possibly just about immediately after getting the mail back inside. Although I started to edit and revise it as I put the lines into typing (thatʼs when the hockey-puck mistake reoccurred to me), I didnʼt, leaving what you get exactly what I wrote in the notebook.


Faint ghostmoon partly melted into the flat blue depths,

blue flowing raggedly in several rough channels into the dish,

spoiled and rotting coin, dissolving ice round,

sizzling silently on summer sky

22 June 2010

Not much there, I admit, just four little lines, but I wanted to record the visual image of the moon melting into the sky because I hadnʼt thought of it looking like that before. And since I hadnʼt used poetry (or creative writing of any kind, at all) much to create posts recently, it seemed appropriate to present something that wasnʼt thirty or forty years old.

Itʼs a nice little fragment but not a poem yet, and as I have no idea what to do with it or use it for, Iʼll just present it as it is for now. (And I lied, without realizing it, above: I added the words “and rotting” when I typed it up.)

The photos from the web are interesting and pretty, too, although neither one quite captures the decaying into blue that the real moon was doing on that June afternoon. The full moon is too clear, and the half moon is, well, just a half, and I saw a full. Furthermore, the fading into the sky part was on the right, not the left.

Okay. I went overboard and redescribed the sight about six times here in the explanation. I think I donʼt think the fragment stands on its own…

©2010 John Randolph Burrow, Magickal Monkey Enterprises, Ltd, S.A.

Third of a Perfect Pair

Among the things I have perceived as cool and interesting, a leader for a very long time has been Stonehenge and from there the other megalithic monuments of northwestern Europe. So if you put neolithic stone circles together with the Great Goddess and other mythopoetic noodlings, then mix in my discomfort at arriving in rural Jackson County a long time ago, and add a dash of moonlit winter night, you get…


Country people seldom know, who never trace
autumnal colored sundown in the trees,
why sometimes that sudden need to fall on knees
and kiss cold dirt all night in starless grace.

Who recalls in this new land, columbian amerigo,
with no stones standing when once the forest’s clear,
the pyres, drums, flutes and caperings, the fear
and finally that greenshoot dawn, away-we-go?

Only the dead remember—unawakened bony dust
now in their stones—the circles of Her reasons
and the serpents of Her geases. Metals rust
while flesh decays alone, outside the seasons.

Still She stalks the cirrused skies by night
and bathes the tender snow with breathless light.


By the way, I was pleased to discover (thanks, Veronique Viardin) that New Year’s Day marked a blue moon, if you extend the month of December across the year division. Two full moons within thirty days—quite a way to begin the final year of this first decade of the twenty-first century. (Of course, it appears everyone but me thinks the tenth year marks the beginning of a new decade, probably because no one wanted to celebrate the new millennium in 2001—sorry, deceased Arthur C. Clarke.)  …And, thank you, Facebook friends or whomever, for adding a sudden spike of fifteen hits yesterday! I guess advertising has its rewards after all.

©2010 John Randolph Burrow, Magickal Monkey Enterprises, Ltd, S.A.