Poem 100: Falls into silence

The lake, as waterfowl take flight, falls into silence.
Limitless stars appear; the night falls into silence.

Sports fields and schoolyards ring with songs of children’s laughter;
Summer lawn with no such delight falls into silence.

The burgeoning kowhai tree in spring weeps golden tears;
Winter shade shedding lustre bright falls into silence.

Parents watch each child leave to face uncertain futures;
The pathway, steps that fall from sight, falls into silence.

Lovers for the first time disagree on little things;
Each, baffled how to solve such plight, falls into silence.

Trains approach with clatter and clashing of steel on steel;
Tumult passes; the scene of might falls into silence.

And Bruce, his time perhaps nearing certain certain-end,
Defying fading of the light, falls into silence.

To hear the poem read aloud click HERE.
Apologies for poor quality – broken mic and wrong mic settings! – I have to crawl under my desk to make a recording, which would make for an excellent photograph should I know how to operate the camera’s time-lapse button.

25 thoughts on “Poem 100: Falls into silence

  1. umashankar

    My first response to the achingly beautiful ghazal was to fall into silence.

    I am not trying to mimic you, Bruce. The stunning imagery and the lingering silence invoked by each of those couplets, as the waterfowls take flight from the lake left desolate, the summer fields hopelessly await the merrymaking of absent children, the golden tears of the Kowhai tree, the empty nests of the parents… they all make time stand still, in silence. The stream of thoughts take a pleasant turn with the introduction of the lovers in the next couplet, symbolising fragility of happiness, but it is quickly drowned by the deafening clutter of steel in steel of the passing train only to reintroduce a deeper silence accentuated by the powerful rumbling. It is a clever imagery, and I wonder what memories and remonstrances it yearns to contain and portray, perhaps passing of the youth in its tempestuous rage, only to fall into silence. The silence and portents of the closing couplet is overbearing. It is as if the river gathering its foibles of sadness all along the course meets the poignant expanse of the eternity.

    Liked by 2 people

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    1. Bruce Goodman Post author

      WOW Uma. Thank you for such a thoughtful and wonderful comment and reflection. You have always been the most positive and encouraging of commentators. I think you’re right about the “tempestuous rage” of youth – but perhaps more so the passing of middle age as well! Thanks again Uma. Most motivating to do more!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. umashankar

        I have always tried to say the truth here and elsewhere too. Permit me to share this with you: I read a lot of blogs but I meet few writers whose writings beckon me oftener.

        This is a poem with which I can relate on several levels, Bruce. The desolation and pain, the remonstrance and the alarm at the rate time is passing me by. And before long, that train of middle age will also have passed me in all its sound and fury. Which reminds me of my favourite quote that has kept growing on me through my journey in life and seems to be readying itself to meet me in the very consummation of it’s promise:

        Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
        Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
        To the last syllable of recorded time;
        And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
        The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
        Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
        That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
        And then is heard no more. It is a tale
        Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
        Signifying nothing.

        Liked by 1 person

        Reply
        1. Bruce Goodman Post author

          Thank you, Uma. The loud and futile wrecking train passes through life after which falls the silence – at least that’s what I feel. I had a cousin (same age as me but long passed on) who would stop the car so as not to hurt a fluttering butterfly. Whereas I was so busy driving to nowhere that I didn’t even notice a butterfly. I think that it’s every little moment is the precious thing and the big picture by and large is the bit that signifies nothing. I’ve given up trying “to be famous” in the big picture and appreciate the moments when you and some others give a nod of thanks.

          Liked by 2 people

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