The Embroidress

chanson          

 Love, what gain will you be making

If, despairing, I’m forsaking

You …….

               Guillaume duc d’Aquitaine, 11th C

 

Evening brings the moon

glinting through some netted vine;

and with my own, her restlessness

seems to intertwine.

 

It’s time to ply my needle

and pierce the fine cloth.

Hoop-bound, it soon flutters

like a pleated moth

 

as the south wind blows

smelling of sea and pine.

I embroider myth

and a love no longer mine.

 

Lark on a branch in blossom —

the whitened fleece of spring,

young man and maiden beneath

who share a moment singing

 

amorous songs by the Duke

who composed in Aquitaine,

my fingers cross stitch now

so nimbly with much less pain

 

than the knot in my spine,

or the breath in my lung.

For us, the birdsong was brief,

the lute strings poorly strung

 

and soft winds that blew

through pasture and ruins of stone

knew the green of leaf and moss

held a pathos of its own.

_____________________________________

The above painting is by 19th C. artist, Edward Reginal Frampton. The quote and Duke referred to in the poem is William, Duke of Aquitaine, who was one of the first troubadours in Southern France. He wrote verses about everyday life and also lamentable love.

3 comments

  1. I can see the netted vine, smell the sea,
    feel the restlessness,
    and the ache of love that haunts.

    Much enjoyed, Wendy.

    take care,
    Kerri

    Like

  2. “Evening brings the moon

    glinting through some netted vine;”

    Wendy,

    Already I’m hooked. What a visual that projects!

    “I embroider myth

    and a love no longer mine.”

    Poetry in motion!

    and this:

    “For us, the birdsong was brief,

    the lute strings poorly strung”

    You make the page sing as you create a timeless poem
    in an ancient voice. Beautiful!

    Sarah

    Like

  3. Dear Sarah and Kerri

    Thank you both so much for reading and commenting on this poem!! I am so glad you enjoyed its contents and deeply appreciate your thoughtfulness and continual interest in my work! It means so much!!

    Take care,
    my best
    Wendy

    Like

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