Sunday, June 3, 2007

Poetry Train Monday - 4 - Awaiting the Unicorn

I've been looking through my old poetry notebooks since I boarded the Poetry Train, and I noticed I had a big spurt of creativity in the summer of 1987. I had been in Toronto for a year by then, getting to know the real me. My best friend had just visited me for a week from Nova Scotia, and we'd done some shopping for her upcoming wedding later that fall.

She gave me a beautiful 'Writer's Notebook', a journal with quotes and lovely Arts and Crafts graphics, plus lots of space to write. And I filled it with poetry.

Here's one from June of 1987. At this point I was a few months away from meeting my husband-to-be.

Awaiting the Unicorn

Let those women
Dream of Prince Charming
Kneeling beside the bed

I shall wade into the wilderness
For I await the Unicorn

A feathery breath at the shoulder
Leaves me with thoughts of ghosts
Branches spring back into place
I happen upon his glade
But carry no sword
The pool of light cascading
Through the red veil of maple

My foot has no shape
To slide into slippers of glass
My bare soles
Curl beneath the folds of my snowy gown
My back settles gratefully
Into solid gray bark

Wind seeps in
While someplace beyond
The water trips, collects and plunges
He lifts his neck
Blue eyes scan the forest
The brook dripping from the perfect mouth

Twig snaps
Under careless hoof
His face lowers to my lap
An invitation to the arrow
Murderers could creep
To his very shoulder
Releasing the blue from his neck
Till it soaked the flaming bed of quills
On which we lay

His gaze through the forelock

Who needs chandeliers
Crowns or cotilions
When death
Blue eyes
A perfect mouth
Await by the brook
In the wood of the silver-white stallion

Copyright 1987 Julia Smith


Emily Veinglory said...

Very evocative... of course I always had a thing for unicorns myself....

Julie S said...

That is very lovely.

Annie Mac said...

That's beautiful Julia

Miss Frou Frou said...

I have images of a maiden lying with a unicorn in a field of blue grass, the unicorn nestling it's head in her lap

Carol said...

Two different unicorns in one day. How wonderful is that? Just lovely. Carol

Rashenbo said...

Very nice. Thank you for sharing.

Akelamalu said...

How lovely!

annette said...

You put words together beautifully, Julia. Have you sent any of your poems into a magazine or elsewhere? If not, you should. They're wonderful.

Jamie said...

Beautiful, but be careful not to wait too long:

From "The Last Unicorn"

At last came a lady both knowing and tender
Saying you're not at all what they take you to be
I betrayed her before she had quite finished speaking
And she swallowed cold poison
and jumped in the sea

And I say to myself when there's time for a word
As I gracefully grow more debauched and depraved
"Ah, love may be strong, but a habit is stronger
And I knew when I loved by the way I behaved"

Amy Ruttan said...

OOh I loved it very magical and sensual. Great poem!

Rhian / Crowwoman said...

this is beautiful and i loved the sentiment of: "I shall wade into the wilderness"
ironic that TA also posted a unicorn poem - was fascinating to read two entirely different takes on same symbol.

toni said...

You're a very talented writer, Julia. Creativity is such a wonderful gift. Sharing it with the world around you is all the better.

Mike M said...

Great blog!! I will be back for more!!

Ann said...

Beautiful poem, very evocative. Thanks.

TopChamp said...

So romantic!

Karina said...

This was beautiful, brought up great images of forest and fantasy.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Awesome stuff, woman! Wow!

Dewey said...

That's a beautiful poem, with great imagery. And to think you wrote it 20 years ago! Had you forgotten about it before you went through the journal?

julia said...

Dewey, I can't forget any of my poems. But I do get surprised when I have a look at them. Sometimes in a good way, sometimes in an I-have-to-edit-this way.

Poetry Train Monday has reawakened a desire to write new material, however.

lettuce said...

a lovely poem - this made me think of all sorts of things - including Alan Garner Elidor, and Elizabeth Goodge's Little White Horse - great writing too.

thanks for visiting my blog.

littlebirdblue said...

Unicorns over zombies, any day.

Joy Renee said...

beautiful imagery and story.

'My foot has no shape
To slide into slippers of glass

the alliteration, the imagery and the allusion to the Cinderella story which the first lines point to with disdain, make these two lines some of the most striking.

i especially like that it is a story. i'm partial to story.

thanx for visiting my poem, Soul Mirror.