Pantoum: Leaving a Wake — a Poem

Much like on the water.  Leaving awake
a surface turmoil that stirred the deep.
Was it disorder purely for passion’s sake?
Emotion like waves crashing my heart’s keep.

A surface turmoil that stirred.  The deep-
rooted belief that faithful love would prevail.
Emotion, like waves, crashing.  My heart’s keep,
a false wall erected, destined to fail.

Rooted belief: that faithful love would prevail
caused me to assume a guise detached;
a false wall erected.  Destined to fail
(she was passing swiftly), I became attached.

Caused me to presume.  A guise, detached;
was it disorder?  Purely for passion’s sake
she was passing (swiftly I became attached)
much like on the water, leaving a wake.

* * *

So, Jilly is at the helm at dVerse Poets Pub for Meeting the Bar.  She’s raised the bar, bidding us to “…write a Form Poem that makes use of Repetitive Lines.”

30 thoughts on “Pantoum: Leaving a Wake — a Poem

  1. /much like on the water–leaving a wake (awake)/ grabbed me. For most of us, classic forms take much more concentration, but at least with these there was no syllable count. I enjoyed the fun you squeezed out of this prompt.


    • Thank you, Glenn! I learned a lot by having my nose pointed toward a Hardy Triolet (Thomas, not Oliver), and seeing how he played with punctuation… and meaning. I’m glad you liked it!


  2. I love the subtle shifts in meaning, Charley, that you have mastered so well in your pantoum, especially in the lines: ‘Emotion like waves crashing my heart’s keep;’ and ‘much like on the water, leaving a wake’. I also like the use of caesura, questions and parentheses to convey the turmoil.


    • Thank you! This is one I wrote on a quiet day by a lake, sitting in an “event chair,” toasting the passengers of the passing tour boats with a nice red (in a plastic stem). We were right adjacent to a No-Wake Zone. The wine went to the pen.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel the pull of still waters, an enveloping bereavement that floats submerged just below a surface. Will we awaken to it, or sleep benumbed repeating like the waves. Charley this is beautiful and strange, intimate, but the protagonist holds their own heart at arm’s length, except when it is crashing. This is one of my favorites of yours.


  4. The repetition builds nicely. It seems to create a vessel that can hold those images. Without the form, it would sort of get away from you. I like the way containment and restraint build the tension.


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