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Lochlanina Tobey

Honorable Mention: 2016 Utmost Christian Poetry Contest $100

About this Poet:
Lochlanina lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Her current obsessions are learning to knit traditional Shetland Lace, growing organic heirloom apples, and spoiling her Yorkie dog Simon. She also writes fiction and you can find her British literary novel, The Postmaster's Tale, through your local bookstore or online. [Amazon Link]

About this Poem:
Mythology, childhood, Scripture, faith, and observation merge to create the images in this poem. Every new experience reminds me that we are all, even at our best, only echos of the greatness of God. I could explain where each image started, why I blended it the way I did to create the meanings expressed, but I find it much more interesting to hear what other people find in what I write. In some ways, I think that the readers (or hearers) bring themselves to the words and create even more texture and depth than I found alone.

Telling

Fingertips raspberry stained
like rosy dawn, I gather sun
soft fruits one by one. It takes longer than
I thought when a child, reaching again
for each unknown. Each bramble born bead
yields to patient touch. Words come
later. Promises and regrets undone
when this need within
honey red berries has grown to words
ripe and gone. Each decade holds
itself apart to mark that it is done. It is finished.
Each drop of blood to willingly plead,
to translate babble, to swallow my own
shadow. Even as the sky slips down
across itself, layers of truth and dust intercede.
I spoke as a child, played as a child,
scorned, spurned, scoffed as children do.
The morning and the evening were just another day
opportunities to be gentle, new
opportunities for fireflies to prove
how dark night could become.
Would become. Then,
would arrogance recede? I am no one.
Sampson, Orion, broken blind constellation,
like Bellerophon in the high tunnel bramble. Thorns
catch in my hair, a crown, to keep me here. And when
the task is accomplished, black
berry stained fingertips reach again
until the last amen.

Copyright ©2016 Lochlanina Tobey