Monday, April 25, 2011

Poetry Train Monday - 188 - The Undiscovered Scream

Day 21 of the A to Z Challenge brings us to the letter U.

This is a found poem, taken from one of my works in progress. It's a scene from my gardener story, which you can check out in my Fiction Excerpt Archives.

I tightened the language of the scene for the poem. Otherwise it reads as it does in the story, which follows this little laundry maid and a gardener from a Victorian country house when they're shipped to Van Diemen's Land as convicts.

The Undiscovered Scream

Helen stood before the gaol
Barred wagon trundled
Towards her

Three more prisoners
Waiting to

How she had longed
To be taken
Last summer

The days since then had
Crawled on famished hands
Exhausted knees

Horses' hooves clapped
On cobblestones
It seemed she

Stepped outside herself
Watching as she moved
Through the hours

Fatigue helped
To blur the moments.
The women beside her

Held hands
The man jumped down
Opened the latch

But Helen felt.
Tendril of fear creeping

How certain she'd been
No more feelings
Left at all

She looked down
Worn fabric
Draft curled around

Her ankles. One woman cried.
The other kept patting her.
Near the harbour

Sea birds cried
Reality entered the
Box like a fourth

Waterfront hurly burly
Men called orders

Cargo nets hoisted.
Jagged masts
Sky clutter

Draped with shrouds
Monstrous webs
Of rope

Helen shivered on the
Wharf, the rough men
On deck stared back

The numbness was gone.
An undiscovered scream
That no one seemed to hear

- Julia Smith, 2009

For more poetry, Ride the Poetry Train!

As we head into the final week of this month-long challenge, I'd like to say thank you to all of my new followers and I look forward to getting to know you, as well as everyone I've followed during this event. The sheer scope of this over-1000-participant blog carnival makes it impossible to visit and comment the way I'd hoped, but it gives me something wonderful to look forward to.


Travis Cody said...

"The days since then had
Crawled on famished hands"

Now that's some great imagery right there.