Thursday, April 11, 2013

IGWRT's - Destinations and Dialogue & Poet's United -Colored "SouthernCharm"

Southern Charm

The afternoon's heat has shackled me, 
sweat pools in places secretive
and I close my eyes, sit upon a scrolled bench, 
tidal breeze welcome, 
imagine a time when women dressed in layers.

Unfazed, a haughty dandy emerges from the brush, 
struts a bedazzled rainbow, 
makes my dishevelment more apparent.

"Show-off," I mutter.  He blinks, struts his crest.

I wilt, deflated, lean back,
watch sultriness ride the Ashley's blackwater current,
meander her way past the live oaks -
enjoy an age old flirtation as fingers tickle the surface,
whose emerged roots in turn she caresses with silky coolness.

I raise my chin, invite her to touch me lovingly as well.

It's a courtship:  the days simmering lassitude woos 
evening's refreshing breath,
begs with open arms all the current can give.

Tomorrow all will be forgotten
as a hasty retreat is made toward the grand city 
and bigger horizons, but for now, all is content.  


The peacock's train fans out, plumage iridescent.
"You win."  I stroll back the way I came. 
With such ornamentation I dare not compete.

by Margaret Bednar, April 11, 2013

I'm also linking this poem with "Imaginary Garden with Real Toad's "Artistic Interpretations - Beauty". (April 24, 2017)  I am the host and my "rules" were a new poem or greatly re-worked - this is neither - but I beg forgiveness.  My 90 year old father had a mild stroke and it has kept me a bit distracted.  He is improving each day and this is great - but I was unable to write a new poem for this prompt.


This is written for Imaginary Garden With Real Toads "Destinations and Dialogues".  The assignment is to:  write a narrative about a place that is special, evil, nostalgic, beautiful, chaotic...whatever you want and try to nail the feeling that it gives you when you are there and confronted with its realness. This can be poetry, prose, technical, I don't care.  And to "sandwich it between a bit of narrative".  

I have described sitting along the banks of the Ashely River which flows in to Charleston SC every morning and flows back towards Middleton Plantation every evening.  

DO YOURSELF A FAVOR, CLICK ON THE LINK of Middleton Plantation... if not just for the header which showcases two "take your breath away" images!  The link to Charleston has a lovely video.  The Lowcountry is truly spectacular.  You will see why it has stolen my heart.

I have also linked this with Poets United "Colored".  What is more colorful than a peacock?  


Fireblossom said...

I love it! "Every girl's crazy 'bout a sharp-dressed man" as the song says. Peacocks are so amazing, and the poor pea hens are so plain! They must feel like throwing up their (figurative) hands, too!

Their warning call is something else, as well. It's used in movies a lot to make a place sound wild and exotic. I was watching a movie not long ago about some place where there just wouldn't be peacocks, but there was that call. Cut! ;-)

Jinksy said...

Peacocks are certainly the biggest show offs of the bird world! Nice tale of Southern Charm on a hot afternoon.

hedgewitch said...

You bring the scene to life, Margaret. I love 'secretive places' and the image of the stifling hoop skirts of the ante-bellum women. How they must have suffered to be beautiful, as my grandmother always said one had to do. The South is drenched in a sense of place, often ominous, but here you show us her more graceful side.

Your ending, wry and accepting of one's own inability to compete with the most gorgeous show in nature, is just the perfect note to conclude things.

(PS. You have a typo in your show-off line)

Ginnie said...

Accessorized to the hilt and NO ONE can compete with Mother Nature. HA!

Laurie Kolp said...

This is beautiful... what a lovely way to start the day... and I do love peacocks.

TexWisGirl said...

i liked it! i could feel the humidity!

Herotomost said...

The reoccurring themes in nature boggle my mind. Plumage and attitude can bring desired gains, then the damn whhoping begins in the middle of the night and all bets are I love peacocks, I love the symbolism that they have to society and how I can so place them beside an overconfident man and not see the difference. The description and setting were beautiful, the only time I flew in to SC was on the way to Jamaica, but as the plane came in, it was fall and trees were breathtaking. Great piece and thanks for coming by. Loved it.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! I love peacocks, too.

Emma Major said...

I love peacock feathers but I'm not crazy about the attitude. you've really captured it well

Ellecee said...

This is really lovely, you capture the scent and sense of the warmth so well,,,and the peacock - well - what can one say?

Mama Zen said...

I just love this! Beautiful, vivid writing.

Susan said...

Beautifully detailed as in your art--you could be drawing the peacock or the past styles, the water flirting. I Like.

Kay L. Davies said...

A tidal river — what a treat! To my mind, anyway, raised as I was to love rivers.
Your sense of place, of time, are perfect, Margaret.

Kim Nelson said...

Amazing piece of writing, Margaret. You transported me to the river's edge, midsummer and glowing with the heat. So very effective. The photos are gorgeous.

Kerry O'Connor said...

You bring historical places and the ghosts that haunt them to life like no one else. This is superb.

Brian Miller said...

the days
simmering danger woos
evening's refreshing breath, that part margaret...and peacocks are def how you bring the scene to life as well...

Grace said...

Peacocks are magnificent creatures with their plumes ~ Who can compete with them, specially in courtship ~

Love the pictures too Margaret ~

Peggy said...

Love your description of this setting and the peacocks. They used to (and probably still do) run wild in my husband's growing up neighborhood in Pasadena. Quite the characters!

Helen said...

The Charleston Chamber of Commerce, the Visitor's Bureau needs to read this. Everyone will want to move - or at least come for a visit!

Poet Laundry said...

This was a delight to read. The sense of place is so serene and lovely. And you made me grin. Those peacocks don't even have to try. Grr. ;-)

Janet Martin said...

LOVE this...esp. this stanza;

It's a courtship: the days
simmering lassitude woos
evening's refreshing breath,
begs with open arms
all the current can give.

This gave me the feeling of treading on sacred ground 'Gone with the Wind' etc.

Thank-you for your encouragement today at my 'porch':) You are one of my all-time fav bloggers so please allow me to say I am humbly flattered.

Anonymous said...

There was a garden in Bermuda where peacock ran about. It was a treat to see the males spread their tailfeathers, but so sad to see the forlorn females, brownish and probably thinking, "That one's too metrosexual for me."

Loved your fingers in the river. Hell, that's better than looking like a strutting color palette any day! I say you won. Amy

Marian said...

wow, what sharp, clear images. i know this place, i think. and the peacocks are rather ridiculous in their finery and their call. c'mon, man, take it down a notch. :)

Mary said...

Beautiful pictures and beautiful scene. Your words have brought all to life. I felt as if I were sitting there too. And I just love peacocks (and peahens too).

alan1704 said...

Lovely picture and very beautiful poem full of colour and imagination. It is amazing how creation has provided such vivid pictures of love. Well done.

Susie Clevenger said...

Darn bird...dressed to kill why you wilt. Beautiful photo and conversation. You light your imagination soar with this one!

kaykuala said...

"You win." I stroll back the way I came.
With such ornamentation I dare not compete.

With such beauty of a silky nature and of beautiful colors one just feels intimidated!


Sanaa Rizvi said...

Oh this is soo beautiful!❤️ I absolutely adore those images of the peacock; "The peacock's train fans out, plumage iridescent."❤️ Thank you so much for the lovely prompt, Margaret.

Jim said...

An oldie but goodie here, Margaret. Your igwrt post hinted of a rework. I am sooo glad you chose this bird. I was ripe for a wrire about my experience, really wasn't make believe (most). Anyway, thank you very much for the prompt and my read of this lovely poem of the elegant bird.
BWT, have you heard of our attack birds down in our Houston Museum District. The mocking birds are digging their claws into pedestrian heads.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

I think you're excused, Margaret! Glad your father is recovering. And the poem is lovely, and fits the prompt, and it's new to me!

Kerry O'Connor said...

You really captured the heat, here, Margaret.. and the scene itself is meticulously conveyed. Also, the photos are particularly stunning - you have a gift, an eye for composition.