Thursday, August 18, 2016

Special Feature: "Flatland: Variations on a Ballad, Part IV" by the Editor

Flatland:  Variations on a Ballad
Steven Wittenberg Gordon


Cold crags
covered in snow
my eagle’s scream

on an icy wind--
a wolf song
from eagle’s beak--
my voice surrounds you.

My hug is grizzly.
My foot roots hold.
My blood flows
and I am warm.

But I awake in pain
on a bed of blades
in a geometric plane.
My spirit fades.

Poet's Notes:  It would be a stretch to call Part IV a ballad.  It retains the traditional four-line stanza, but the stanzas are hardly quatrains--one line is even a single word.  The easily understood musical qualities of the original and second versions have become strained, more surreal, with only imperfect echoes in the final stanza.

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