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Don't Rush

What I wake to is crypt-like,
sealed and refrigerated
Comatose shadows startle at
my sock-softened, scuffling footfalls
This house, with it's wrong-angled windows,
it's barricading hallways
sulks through my day, a seeker of sleep, head in arms

I live by seasons, not hours
a cycle of reasons, not ours
and when the grip of factored time,
a mechanical schedule releases me
I drift in the belly of this seething behemoth
meditating on Jonah beast-locked

I sip coffee with autumn
as the dying light revives me
I brunch amiably with winter
as slippery midnight slowly finds me
You bring hints of spring at 5am
when you finally bungle in the door
and spry birds quip “March!” as you relent to sleep
sprawl across the couch and snore

I live in streams of silent text and mock light
and the pull of debt and
what will be done because it can be done
and the promise of a summer I have yet to see

"All the darkness in the world
cannot put out the light
of one candle"

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The following comments are for "Don't Rush"
by hazelfaern

certainly won't rush
hazelfaern, I just woke up and this is the first thing I read, and I think I'll be reading it again. And again. And again. There's so much in this poem, a real rich and brilliantly broody read. 'Specially like "grip of factored time" and "slippery midnight" and "meditating of Johna beast-locked". Think I'll probably have to read it through a few more times and be slightly more awake before I have any useful comments to make, but at the moment I just know I like cadence of the words and the sense of foreboding and disquiet. I like poetry I can get my teeth in to, and this is a feast.


( Posted by: AuldMiseryGuts [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

Very nice, very nice indeed. I feel a strong connection to my avatar after i read this piece :D

( Posted by: Siah [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

Where did Summer go?
We get no reaction from the speaker at this end of the piece, when "he" enters like spring... I expect, after waking in winter, and waiting in autumn, and being greeted with the false and painful promises of spring that she might get hot, get angry like winter... But she does not. She slides back into autumn, into winter, into coma and waiting.

We must create our own summers, I think, no one delivers sunny days, sprinklers, popsicles to us. And yet, she waits, captive of the sleeping house, and Jonah's whale, and his dishonest spring.

Very graceful piece, Hazel... sad, lonely, honest, and painful. Good work.

( Posted by: shefallssoftly [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

Jennifer waits
You are a wonderful much so...most of you poetry is over my I read and reread this to see if I could make it out...and this is what I got in my pea brain...a woman awakes in the night to find her hubby/partner...isn't home yet...makes a pot of coffee and waits for hours...only to have him stumble in at 5am , falls on the sofa , passes out in a drunken stupor.. throw the bum out...was I hot or freezing cold? Maybe I'm having another flashback! Kacee

( Posted by: nitz kitty [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

Slow-spun seasons and liquid-crystal time
That's great, Kacee - I see the way your mind's going! Me, however, I think this is about the shifty spectrum of time; the way we rush it and the way it rushes us. More specifically, it's about the awkwardness of living/working on a schedule with which neither your house nor your body (nor perhaps your partner!) really agrees. And I think it's good. Richly, chewably good; lyrical and multi-layered. It's slice of life spun out and delved down into something deeply reflective.

At first, the way that everything is anthropomorphised (those beetly scuttling shadows, the grouchy angular house) nicely reflects an abstracted mindset... then as the poem goes on, you have some coffee, makes some toast and grow reflective and accepting. Indeed, the title chimes subtly but centrally with the whole metaphor of a day growing as long and as seasonally-various as a year. Does this eclectic schedule actually manufacture time, offering a new perspective upon it?

My favourite part is the final stanza: the way the imperative of 'what will be done because it can be done' (and, under pressure of debt and commitment, MUST be done) is set against the hope that it will all be worth it soon. Because summer will arrive in the end. And I find that more lovely than painful... the poem after all begins in a crypt and ends in the promise of sunshine... so perhaps time needn't enslave us after all?

( Posted by: MobiusSoul [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

hazelfaern's haunted house

This is a big breathing poem. It walks, it dances, it stirs up the dust. It sits down to eat toast. It opens the door for us so the speaker will have some company.

Thank you for the dance, Madam.

~ John

( Posted by: Flonigus [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

I'm with Casey... I see sad
First of all, this is gorgeous.

And I'm not disagreeing with Mobius... but I think that the stateliness and subdued pace of this piece are all in service of a real sadness. Nothing bitter or whiny or shrill. But the kind of sadness that comes with the knowledge of the inevitability of seasons... with only a "promise" of summer.

Any chance for it to be real? We are not sure. The other seasons all get their chance. They get them all in a day. Winter at waking, autumn for coffee (which is great... of course we drink coffee with autumn...), hints of spring in the morning. Three of of four ain't... bad? Right? Every day? Three out of four? Where is that summer I've been promised?

Waking to the crypt. Sleeping to the promise of spring. Only to begin again. But there is coffee, and the sound of birds, and "what must be done." All within the "sealed" house.

Beautifully paced, I say again. Slow, like the title says. But I think the title may be a bit ironic or sarcastic. Maybe the only part of this piece that whines or gripes even a little. Is it a comment to that summer that's been promised? "Don't rush..."

And the lovely, soft rhymes placed here and there like chocolate. I know I'm allergic... but I remember it... Yummy. The end rhymes are soft, too. Never jarring.

All-in-all, very, very nice.

[If I have one complaint, it's that I really do not get the "factored time" through "Jonah beast-locked" portion of the program. It doesn't seem to fit as well witht the hours/seasons thought progress... but I may be dense, lacking coffee, and missing something]

( Posted by: andyhavens [Member] On: June 19, 2006 )

Good to see you again Hazelfaern
Another brilliant piece Hazelfaern...was delighted to see you back with us...seems too many of our old friends have dissappeared lately...seeing your work again was comforting...left me wanting more.


( Posted by: Beatrice Boyle [Member] On: June 21, 2006 )

Old and New
This is stunning. I like what flonigus said about a big "breathing" poem. I have no complaints, except with your title. Predictabl title for such a good poem.

It's always nice see familiar writers like you, and also all the new writers. Have you noticed how many new writers have sprung up at the lit.? I think its great to see so many newbies. I hope you and all the other "old gang" regulars take the time to make some of these new writers feel appreciated and welcomed.

I'm looking forward to reading more poetry from our's beautiful and talented Hazelfaern.

( Posted by: unseenwriterx [Member] On: June 21, 2006 )

Why Rush?
A prisoner of circumstance

The images of struggling on schedules forced by necessity, turning days into seasons, seasons into days, caffeine and sleeping pills seems to ooze out of this one......

Title throws me though?

( Posted by: ivordavies [Member] On: June 21, 2006 )

Jennifer's Living Levels
Interesting takes above..

Can hear house saying: "Don't rush."

Structure, as speaker...Of course, I have vivid imagination.

I believe in lines 5 and 6, "its" is called for. Small matter.

Enjoyed read; sure to return..

Robert William

( Posted by: Bobby7L [Member] On: June 21, 2006 )

The Wrong Hour
Oh! I really hadn't expected this level of really lovely, thoughtful feedback -- especially since I haven't been around in ages and this poem sort of popped up out of nowhere. (Miss Bea, the idea that you'd feel comforted *and* wanting more after reading this is one of the nicest compliments I think I could hope to have :))

This poem was the result of an exercise and the title came as part of the package. The proposal was, essentially, that I should write something about time.

Oy. In poetry, I think, there is love and time and all other subjects are simply subheadings. So writing about time means, at the very least, handling heavily pre-treated material.

Which is why my first instict, which is the one I ran with, was to turn the expected subject matter on it's head -- talk about time out of joint, talk about the feeling of living in a schismed experience of time.

I didn't necessarily intend for the tone to be a sad one. Dark, yes. Darkened as the house in which this narration is occuring. I wanted the house to have a real presence, to work as a character with its own demands. And I wanted the title to work as an affront, to create a sense of heightened confusion: rush through what? This sense of time is nearly a total fabrication.

And yet it's not, entirely, and that's why I wanted to end with the note on summer -- it's illusory but it's there and I think it's what keeps the midnight house humming.

Thanks for the thoughts, everyone. Ivor, your new avatar totally threw me. Kacee, I think you were fairly warm and I probably should have put more context in my poem. "Throw the bum out!" made me laugh. Shefalls! I'm flattered you stopped by. Mobius, as always the depth of your insight astounds me. I think you really got this, more than I'd hoped anyone would. AuldMiseryGuts, I like your eye for detail. Bobby, Flonigus, Siah, unseenwriterx, thank you! Andy, you know you're loved.

( Posted by: hazelfaern [Member] On: June 22, 2006 )

It's been my experience that summer comes down to every second you can spend together.

Heaven isn't experienced, it's made.

Good poem. Good arguement for higher wages and matching schedules.

And very evocative, Jennifer, of the darker places in waiting.

( Posted by: johnlibertus [Member] On: July 14, 2006 )

Good stuff.
This is not an exercise. This is real. This is good.

( Posted by: Bobby7L [Member] On: January 10, 2011 )

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