Today, my wife encouraged me to tackle the Sestina form of poetry. This is a poem with 6 stanzas of 6 lines, followed by a 3 line stanza, where the last words are shared but rotated in a particular (and rather odd) pattern. I don’t think I could do the technical description justice, so please consult the wikipedia entry if you want to know more details.
Through the wild
Sometimes I feel like a wolf, alone, out in the wild
with no pack to love me, despite my flaws. No home base
to wander near and far from. In the lonely night I howl
at the moon, calling to my only friend, asking her to follow
me across the hills and through the valleys, to remain ever present.
And when she does not emerge, I am left to shed a forlorn tear.
Through the darkness, desperate to see her once more, I tear.
Afraid she is gone forever, panic drives me wild
and I run, run until I no longer feel present
in my own body. Only then do I pause at the base
of a tree and let my gaze follow
its slender trunk upward toward the sky and howl.
From the core of my being I howl
at the empty sky, wanting to tear
it open and follow
her to that wild
place she calls her base
when she refuses to present
herself to me. That is why I present
my most lamentful howl –
to crack open her base,
to break open her heart, to bring a tear
to her cheek, to tame her wild
ways, so that she might follow
me once more. In silence I follow
the horizon, hoping she is present.
And when I see she has not returned from her wild
place, I am left, once more, to feel my own howl,
to crack myself open, to bring a tear
to my own cheek and let it run down to my base.
I don’t know what failure she might base
her judgment upon, to refuse to follow
me now. Perhaps another’s mournful tear
was the more gifted present,
the more lamentful howl,
the more exciting run through the wild.
Next time, I tell myself, feel from the base, live in the present,
and she is sure to follow the sound of your howl
and tear with you through the wild