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When three Rosella shadows flit

When three Rosella shadows flit above
these piled trunks,seasoned long in valleys old
and ageless deep, where carved out wisdom knew
to freeze the seeping, sapped insight of old

meandering minds; those men who worked below
these icy lanscapes , the world kept hid,
locked in a continental shelf, half white
all fateful thought trapped in preserving cold

deep further stilled, an older memory lives,
of those that came before the fragile maps
were drawn, and took away the breath of whispered
secrets given to land and beast, and bird

that year on year slowly reveal themselves
for what shadow thrown up by flock or self,
lengthens at dawn and slackens back at eve?
the only memory left of love now locked

in ice awaiting promised thaw reprieve,
waiting on spring, with rain and life this time
waiting for the quiver slow pulse of earth
to shake the seed awake from underground

to wake from dream the slumbering minds of men
waking eternally, to glacial claims,
by seasons, that no longer hold the sway,
of pine trees, gum and scrub land left around.

Then out of driest winter rocks I see
life peeps in fern green horns, something so strange
is turning this cacophony of life
into a spring ignited symphony

and then the oldest story ever told
rewrites itself again as if to tell
all ages and all things that come to see
this ageless love of life just longs, to be.

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Last few words: 
This is an experiment on the sense perception and memory, and the "fue lit" memory that arises when three little birds slip over you head. It has a number of versions, this is one..just testing the waters..
Editing stage: 


It seems that way to me. I find as I scalpel a poem, it is when it is trying to say too much.
What is man's oldest fear? The memory of love locked away? as i reread i have more questions, less footing, on the ultimate driving message of the poem. What is the oldest story ever told..i've only heard that expression for the bible, but that doesn't seem to fit it. I can't connect this sentence..

and thirty leagues below those icy plains the old

deep stilled, a further memory,residing
by latitude degrees below old maps.

The comma before "to be" , makes me even more unsure at the end. Is the poem about the waiting and expectation of love...or is it about the resurrection of spring...the word memory appears 3 times,as icy memory, further ice memory, and of the poem about memory...

I think when I start to go on like that I have failed to grasp the core of the poem. For me, that is what you need to do with this poem, connect the divers images and find which really fit the central theme of the work. You have all the technical skills of a mature poet. It is not uncommon for artists on your level to step out and try new compositions, and effects, but sometimes at the expense of the accessibility of a reader to catch the drift.

I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance
ee cummings

I actually wrote this on a log, after three of the said birds did indeed flit overhead, and plonk themselves on a gum. We live on a forestry plantation, that was formerly a sheep property, and before that it was an area heavily logged for timbers to take down to Port Arthur. I'm reading about the history of the area, and the Rum Corps, a couple of characters in particular. Before transportation ended, this are (Woodsdale) was an area steeped in a darker history, and I have a ton of notes, as stated that are connected to this piece - and it is going to take shape and make more sense soon, promise. You rightly said sit on a poem for a while, well I am going to continue reading, before i post anything substantive, take some time. The memory is more connected with the plight of those that stood beneath the shadow of the Rosella, just as I did. The many 'convenient silences' of Tasmania, that i want to reveal.
On another note, the little pile of books continue to accumulate, so far we have Gwen Harwood - who you will adore, Kenneth Slessor, who gave us 'Five bells' (look that one up - and some exiting Tasmaniana - I very much enjoyed reading your printed pieces, and will message you with my impressions soon.

Thanks mate,

Talk soon.


Chris Hall - Tasmania

Grossbooted draymen rolled barrels dullthudding out of Prince's stores and bumped them up on the brewery float. On the brewery float bumped dullthudding barrels rolled by grossbooted draymen out of Prince's stores.

author comment

And I envy the amount of spectacular nature you have around you. I remember driving on one of Tasmania's well kept roads, albeit they were narrow, going through forest, woodland, rain forest, mountains, rainbows, wildlife, and it was rare to see another car, maybe one an hour.
I have a favorite spot in the DC arboretum, 450 acres of perfect mix of landscaped and wild forest, where for some reason nobody goes to during the week, I have the whole place virtually to myself, other than a huge bird population. Lately I've been playing bird calls found on youtube on my phone- and then they all come gather around, checking me out, and singing their heads off! Like a chorus.

In Wagner, blessed be Siegfried. He slays the dragon and in doing so tastes the blood which is magical and he can understand the language of birds. They tell him his love is sleeping, like sleeping beauty, waiting for hero to come for her through the wall of good is that!

Looking forward to seeing this poem develop!

I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance
ee cummings

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