Poetry by Jeff Green

2537–This_old_house.html

This old house

by cricketjeff on January 12, 2010.  © Jeff Green, All rights reserved

The merest hint of what was there before
An echo of the laughter in the hall
As everyone makes ready for the ball
The ghosts of Lords and Ladies at the door
      The eldest daughter waits to take the floor
      Tonight’s the night  that proves she has arrived
      A hint of her first triumph has survived
      The ghosts of Lords and Ladies at the door
The dancers did not know what was in store
The date is August Nineteen Thirty Nine
A final chance for innocence to shine
The ghosts of Lords and Ladies at the door
      The merest hint of what was there before
      The ghosts of Lords and Ladies at the door

It’s silent now the house is cold and bare
She leaves without a single backward glance
Her mind recalls a night of love and dance
And no-one else remembers who was there
      No long debates about which dress to wear
      No-one was going to see her anyway
      She doesn’t want to mark her saddest day
      And no-one else remembers who was there
The ghosts of all their friends hang in the air
Her husband left before they built a life
She’s only been a widow not a wife
And no-one else remembers who was there
      It’s silent now the house is cold and bare
      And no-one else remembers who was there

     

Author notes

A pair of “echo sonnets”

An echo sonnet is a development on the Kyrielle sonnet. It is a poem with fourteen ten syllable lines (preferably as here in iambic pentameter) with a rhyming pattern of A1bbA2 accA2 addA2 A1A2. That is the first and fourth lines of the first three stanzas rhyme as do the second and third lines. The first line of the poem is repeated as the first line of the closing couplet and the final line of each stanza is the same. If you like you can vary the repeated lines slightly, develop them to fit the flow of the poem but the rhyming word and the “feel” of the line must remain the same.

The picture, the prompt for this poem is “Fade to Grey” by Sarachmet on DeviantArt.com http://sarachmet.deviantart.com/art/Fade-To-Grey-147371106