Category Archives: Ottava Rima

Triduum

i. Black and White

by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

Before the sorrow, before the thorn,
looking away into what lies inside
the senses, memories as yet unborn.
Do you remember? Reality sliced
into ribbons, tongues of flame. Roses worn
where wounds will root. Peering thru many-eyed,
caught in hatched pencil lines. Before the thorns,
before the sorrows, the closed mouth unshorn.

ii. Light and Dark

by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

When light enters the eye does it grow dark?
Do other waves weep as it slips in the grave?
Or do they shiver loose fragmented arcs
(wild rose petals clustered around a cave,
droplets of sound more liquid than the lark,
cascade unheard more sweetly than if saved)?
When light enters the eye does it transform,
tracing the shivering nerves until warm?

iii. Closed and Open

by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

There is a tenderness in the morning,
when eyes grown used to dark open to light.
It is as if light bruises, gives warning,
confuses. It is as if light invites
the night, all things closed, all hearts in mourning
to open. Things that are dark may grow bright.
Things that are open, close. This is the night
full of gladness, dazzling, gentle with sight.

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Closed and Open


by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

There is a tenderness in the morning,
when eyes grown used to dark open to light.
It is as if light bruises, gives warning,
confuses. It is as if light invites
the night, all things closed, all hearts in mourning
to open. Things that are dark may grow bright.
Things that are open, close. This is the night
full of gladness, dazzling, gentle with sight.

Light and Dark


by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

When light enters the eye does it grow dark?
Do other waves weep as it slips in the grave?
Or do they shiver loose fragmented arcs
(wild rose petals clustered around a cave,
droplets of sound more liquid than the lark,
cascade unheard more sweetly than if saved)?
When light enters the eye does it transform,
tracing the shivering nerves until warm?

Black and White


by gailrayaia, on Instagram

Image by Gail Ray

Before the sorrow, before the thorn,
looking away into what lies inside
the senses, memories as yet unborn.
Do you remember? Reality sliced
into ribbons, tongues of flame. Roses worn
where wounds will root. Peering thru many-eyed,
caught in hatched pencil lines. Before the thorns,
before the sorrows, the closed mouth unshorn.

Fragment of Pain

Beginning with a single fleck.
That is an injury, perhaps
an opening. Probe with a stick
or not, it still spreads. There are gaps
unseen now made overt, a speck
that zigzags in the empty maps
drawn rib to rib, rubbing over rough spots,
revealing terrain like 100 watts.

Fragment of Faith

A common cardinal calls, with rushed chirrups.
And again. And again. Car doors crunching,
babes cry. “The pancake breakfast needs syrup!”
“It’s not breakfast, remember? We’re brunching
today!” People scurry to help, bring cups
of whatever’s lacking. Friends laugh, choirs sing.
Bodies bend, voices rumble roughly together.
A bird calls back, slowly, and sheds a red feather.