The quivering

Inspired by an afternoon walk with my son.
Weary of discussing the world and its problems, we lapsed into quiet commiseration…
then, nearing end of the road, this sound, this airy, magical, musical quivering…

At the end of my road, over the street
Where expanse of sky and fallow field meet
I walk on in silence, until hearing
The faintest vibration upon nearing

—a quickening

Made by a thousand—a million—small things
Choir of minuscule cantors with wings
Singing their song in darkness, unbidden
Deep among long tangled grasses, hidden

—a quavering

Trilling celestial, ethereal sound
Otherworldly pulse of the Earth, unbound
Cadence of our own burgeoning story
Life playing out in wild morning glory

—a quivering
—a shivering

At the end of my road, over the street
Where sky and field and infinity meet.

*******

with gratitude for the poetic gathering on Poetry Fridays
and to Bridget Magee for hosting today’s Roundup.

24 thoughts on “The quivering

  1. Fran, the use of rhyme and the active words standing alone make this poem like a song. I love this line, “Otherworldly pulse of the Earth, unbound”. Was this cicadas? I think they definitely sound otherworldly. I like a poem that takes me on a journey of sound. Thanks.

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    • Actually it wasn’t cicadas this time, as much as I love them! One or two are still holding on here and I know I must write to that soon. This sound was tiny insects in the field, probably a variety of crickets and such, although not the familiar chirping. It was … a steady quivering. The field is alive with the sound of tiny music, swelling. So glad you love that pulse line – it’s one of my favorites, too – and that you found the poem songlike. I counted syllables for rhythm.

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  2. Fran, your title is magical in itself prompting me to inquire further. I was eager to enter your poem with its rhythm that transported me to the place you crossed. I do love walks where I just listen to what is around me. The animals sense nature’s evening presence and respond with the sound of an airy, magical, musical quivering like you noted. I try to detect what sounds I hear when I am out on walks but you found just the right words to invite me into your scene.

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    • Thank you, Carol, for stopping to listen to the little magical rhythms with me! I once wrote a six-word memoir: “Nature speaks to me. I listen.” I know this is so true of you also.

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  3. Wow, Fran, this is wonderful! I want to be there, although you certainly took us there in your poem. Like Bridget, I love “Choir of miniscule cantors with wings.” And the rhythm and rhyme calls mightily for the words to be read aloud! Thanks for sharing your experience!

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  4. Fran, this poem is beautiful…..so many lines grabbed me starting with, “Choir of miniscule cantors with wings.” Oh, my. And, then the echo of the field meeting the sky, infinity and the repetition of the sound words. Really, really beautiful. I was in the poem. In the moment of quiet with you on that walk. Thank you!

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    • I tried hard to capture the moment – the quiet simplicity of it as well as the deep sacredness of it – so hard to encapsulate. “Quivering” was the word that came to mind and started it all. How I appreciate your words – thank you!

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  5. Oh, Fran, your poem is simply gorgeous! Such crafting — stunning word choice and masterful use of fascile, natural rhyme. That final couplet is the perfect ending. I’m so glad you experienced this transcendent moment with your son and shared it with us. This poem will quiver within me for a long while.

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  6. Your poem is both prayer and meditation, love how you draw the reader in with vivid images and the repetition of “q” words. It’s calming and beautiful, quite hypnotic. Enchanting to be quiet and still, listening as the earth hums . . .

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    • I so appreciate your words, Jama – there was a holiness to the sound, and my being still and listening was very meditative, prayerlike. Thanks so much for reading and listening with me.

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    • Thank you, Kimberly. A walk is perfect for meditating, listening and absorbing the life and sound of its living all around, in just being present in its presence. You’re so right about taking time to stop and notice. So grateful for your thoughts.

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