Idea: The Writer’s War


The idea seizes.

I fly to pen

These whispers burning deep within,

To scribe these thoughts of dawn-like fire

(That I can never fully hear,

Yet feel them like a deep-lodged spear)

Oh, the fascination they inspire!

Each contour: untouched mystery,

In this idea given to me.

The daylight wanes, spills into night.

Brown shadows jig with lantern light . . .

And still I war. I watch in awe

As all my tangled mind unfolds.

With majesty, confusion molds

To figures sunlight never saw-

Yet they must be more real than sight.

They love and laugh and cry–and fight.

I strive to capture them, but they

With steely brows have seized their way.

Careening wild inside my mind,

They tease my hands, unearth fool’s gold.

I hunt them, yet their trails unfold

A thousand roads . . . I lag behind,

Groping for just one memory

Of all their force and dignity.

The dark wanes, spills to morning light.

I, weary-eyed, still grapple spite,

Still pound these shadows to frail reprise

Of what they were when they were born;

And all that I attempt, I scorn

Into crumpled balls of compromise,

Of rambling words and hackneyed might–

Oh, when shall I begin to write?

By Mary Faustina