Across the bridge

I’ve been really busy since October 2014, so I did not have time to think of any ideas for poems and short stories. However, since 1 Jan 2015 is a public holiday, I thought of writing a poem to start off the year. 🙂

The title of this poem is ‘Across the bridge’, because the December 2014 theme for The Writer’s Tower is BRIDGE. I decided to write a story poem for this theme.

So, here’s to a fruitful and creative year ahead. I wish all of you the very best in everything you do. 🙂

 

Bridge in Dungun, Terengganu

Bridge in Dungun, Terengganu

 

Across the Bridge

Across the bridge
Was where I first saw her
As I was coming down the ridge

Was she one of them? The thought did occur
In the wind, her wispy locks fluttered
Not that there was anyone to refer

As I walked quietly; not a word she uttered
But just as I passed; I caught her eye
A grudging greeting she muttered

‘Hello’ and ‘Goodbye’
Was the length and breathe of our conversation
For weeks, I wondered – who, where and why…

What would I say? I wondered in frustration
Now, there were only ‘them’ and ‘us’
Where did ‘we’ go? I thought in consternation

There was no longer any trust
What was I to say?
Be always on guard, we must

Across the bridge every day
Days turned into weeks, months and then a year
Over the divide, we did find our way

Was she one of them? I never did fear
Life was busy; so many other things to consider
I only cared that she was a companion and a peer

One day, it wasn’t the same. Was it the water?
Was it the clouds, the wind or the rain?
No, leaning on the beam, she faltered

Crimson streaked her shirt; she was in pain
To the doctor, I insisted
I tried to convince her in vain

Slumping down; weakly, she resisted
I held her steady, trying to sooth her frantically
Her downward spiral persisted

At last, she whispered in my ear softly
“My name is Karen, please remember me fondly.”

An original poem by
Khor Hui Min
1 Jan 2015

 

Fishing boats in Dungun, Terengganu

Fishing boats in Dungun, Terengganu

 

Poetic style

This poem was written in the style of a terza rima – an Italian form of poetry first used by Dante Alighieri.

A terza rima consists of stanzas of three lines (or tercets). It follows an interlocking rhyming scheme, or chain rhyme – the middle of each stanza rhymes with the first and last line of the following stanza. However, there is no set length to this form, as long as it follows the pattern as follows:

ABA
BCB
CDC
DED

The last stanza will be a couplet rhyming with the middle line of the previous stanza. In this case, EE.

So here is my poem again with the rhyming scheme shown:

 

Across the Bridge

(A) Across the bridge
(B) Was where I first saw her
(A) As I was coming down the ridge

(B) Was she one of them? The thought did occur
(C) In the wind, her wispy locks fluttered
(B) Not that there was anyone to refer

(C) As I walked quietly; not a word she uttered
(D) But just as I passed; I caught her eye
(C) A grudging greeting she muttered

(D) ‘Hello’ and ‘Goodbye’
(E) Was the length and breathe of our conversation
(D) For weeks, I wondered – who, where and why…

(E) What would I say? I wondered in frustration
(F) Now, there were only ‘them’ and ‘us’
(E) Where did ‘we’ go? I thought in consternation

(F) There was no longer any trust
(G) What was I to say?
(F) Be always on guard, we must

(G) Across the bridge every day
(H) Days turned into weeks, months and then a year
(G) Over the divide, we did find our way

(H) Was she one of them? I never did fear
(I) Life was busy; so many other things to consider
(H) I only cared that she was a companion and a peer

(I) One day, it wasn’t the same. Was it the water?
(J) Was it the clouds, the wind or the rain?
(I) No, leaning on the beam, she faltered

(J) Crimson streaked her shirt; she was in pain
(K) To the doctor, I insisted
(J) I tried to convince her in vain

(K) Slumping down; weakly, she resisted
(L) I held her steady, trying to sooth her frantically
(K) Her downward spiral persisted

(L) At last, she whispered in my ear softly
(L) “My name is Karen, please remember me fondly.”

To read more about the terza rima poetic style, visit the Young Writers’ Website.

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About khorhmin

Khor Hui Min thinks of life as a continuous learning process and believes in a healthy balance in work and life. She is a freelance writer, who is active in publishing poems and short stories. She moonlights as a facepainter for the Malaysian Nature Society, and also enjoys creating and carving pottery. She has a Bachelor of Computer Science and Master of Science (Environmental Science). You can read more of her writing at https://projectprose.wordpress.com/ and https://huiminskitchen.wordpress.com/
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