9/3/13

Widow's Waltz Revisited


Chuck Will's call through mourning
singing up
a slow dance
waiting death, no dawdling

Chuck Will-ill's
Chuck Will-ill's
widow will
but Chuck won't

Mourn limp limbs, sluggish mind,
solo waltz
years lost too
broken man death couldn't find

Chuck will
Chuck did
Chuck Will's
widow won't

secret stash pills swallowed
no regret
bright flute leads
Chuck dances, she follows


Chuck Will-ill's
Chuck Will-ill's
widow will
but Chuck won't

Chuck's widow waltzes slow
luminous
nightgown swirls
shrouding grief letting go

Chuck will
Chuck did
Chuck Will's
widow won't

~Nara Malone

For those who don't know, a chuck-will is a bird, much like a whip-poor-will, that sings at night. The first time you hear one you can recognize it by its call: chuck-will's-widow.  A call that replays through the night. A few years back I wrote this poem about chuck-wills . This is a reworking for a class I'm taking and my contribution to dVersePoets.com OpenLinkNight. Drop by to see what others wrote or to join the fun yourself.

15 comments:

  1. ha. the repetition and your play off of the call...chuck-will makes for a pretty cool cadence and fun bit of word play as well.....

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  2. I can almost hear the sound of the bird in this poem....but I sense there is much more happening, with a death on the horizon. Very evocative writing.

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  3. I like the repetition of Chuck will's widow ~ The ending though gave me a dark foreboding ~

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  4. Before I noticed your name, I had the strong sense of my Irish heritage in this beautiful, though eerie poem. Even before you explained it, I could tell Chuck Will was a bird and felt like it was an omen of sorts. I very much enjoyed what you did with this.

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  5. oh very cool word play in this...didn't know that it's the name of a bird...very cool write

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  6. A great play with bird song.. And how it works on people listening

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  7. i didn't know it was a bird's name til the end, but the cadence it gave was haunting even before i realized it... nice bit of wordplay.

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  8. I didn't know it was a bird. Thought it was the husband's name. Still it made sense to me in weird way. It felt a little eerie, sad and piercing because of the repetition. Good job here. Hope your class likes it too.

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  9. Oh, this was so melancholy it painted me all blue. I loved it, Nara. Finding out about the bird after reading makes it even neater.

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  10. I had no idea what a chuck will was but it had the feel of a folk song all the way through - my mind was building chords through it all the way -pretty much in A minor. Lovely evocative poem.

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    1. Me too! I have never composed music for a song, but when I was writing this a minor chord progression just started playing in my head. 8 fired up Garage Band and started playing around with it. No idea what I am doing, but it's fun.

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  11. beautiful poem, a melodic tone but one carrying a hint of sorrow.

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts.