she looked west

photo: NASA
photo: NASA

She looked west and found forever.
Drew a map there with her eyes –
verdant pools like olive seas,
stormy from remembered lies.
Drips a portrait, paints with pain –
she and I above the fray –
uses sunrise as her brush,
dares to hope another day.

Points her gaze to north of always
Auroras dance the end of night.
I join in, without direction,
win a smile, however slight.
Limpid lights of lightening skies
point in passion-painted pink,
past the greying edge of daybreak
to a star yet indistinct.

Smile now fading, she looks north
to a solitary star.
“Orion,” say I, gaped in wonder.
“No, that’s hope, but it’s too far.”
“Hope’s for taking not for wishing,”
I reply, though not with scorn.
“Then let’s grab some, ‘cause I’m weary,
and I need to see the morn.”

Pupils dilate as we travel
starlight blinding as we run,
holding hands like fevered children
towards our newly dawning sun.
Incandescence growing brighter,
as she stops to kiss me words.
Then she tiptoes, whispers secrets,
futures fly like winged birds.


    1. It’s a prominent constellation, visible throughout the Earth. If you can find Orion, you can find your way.

      1. Ishaiya says:

        I have the constellation of Orion on my left arm.

        1. I wrote that line on 31 December 2006. I rewrote the piece last night and tonight. That was one of a very few lines I kept. It didn’t rhyme until last night.

          1. It’s the anchor of the piece. Dawn is the only time when both night and day exist. The past and the present, either in harmony, or disharmony. We look behind and either find a way forward, or are lost in the looking.

            The piece started off as I thought it was about someone I’d known for a short while and with whom I’d been in a relationship for two weeks. I never finished it because it wasn’t right, nor was it about her. I finished it last night.

            Hopefully, this is the last re-write, although the last stanza isn’t written yet. No, it’s not complete, but was ready to be posted.

            1. Ishaiya says:

              It’s a nice piece

  1. Bob Mills says:

    I liked this very much Bill! Thank you

    1. Thanks, Bob! I’m trying to turn my old terrible work into actual good work, now that I’ve learned to write. It’s much like retouching an old photo.

      1. Bob Mills says:

        You really are a gifted individual my friend

  2. Allyson Mellone says:

    This line…
    “Smile now fading, she looks north
    to a solitary star”

    Is it resignation? It kept me awhile thinking.

    1. It is resignation, in a way. Even faced with our desires, we can convince ourselves they are out of reach. Hopefully, we have people who will help us to believe before we resign ourselves to settle for less than we hoped.

      1. Allyson Mellone says:

        Yes, but only if can look beyond west. Think you, Bill 🙂

  3. I truly fear that any praise I could bestow upon this poem would be insulting, for it deserves better than I can summon. Yet, the hopefulness that fills me when I read it inspires words to flow (that and Beethoven just came surging through my headphones). Yes, you’re right, there’s always hope, though I find it easier to summon in some aspects of my life than others. Still, this is beautifully crafted and astonishing in its imagery. There’s life in hope and you’ve captured it here. This so captures the essence of my near future that I’ll have to keep this near. I thank you for that and for the “futures” that “fly like winged birds.”

  4. ericaatje says:

    “Drips a portrait, paints with pain” …. that’s me… 😉

    1. 😦 Yes, I guess it is. Wish it weren’t you.

      1. ericaatje says:

        Me too! Hahaha!!! Well, it’s like it is and I have to live with it and still do. Alive and kicking!!! 😉

  5. cecilia says:

    God that is stunning.. can’t write more, my words seem little somehow.. c

    1. Thanks, Cecilia. Glad you stopped by.

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