The Harpist

the harpiest

If I could  wander the beach

with a slip underscoring my skirt like foam,

a harp under my arm mapping the air

with its musical longitude,


I would be like her. Spirit or shadow

always on the strand of time

never fitting the pace that treads

terminal or tunnel, a street of clocks and lamps.

A block of granite and glass.


If I could carry my craft  against my rib —

alder wood against maiden bone, I would sense

the weight  of being all song. Song that transcends,

sings ageless anywhere the sea winds drift

and the slow tide rolls or birds scavenge

the earth’s skull for lost souls.


If I could risk the cutting of roots

and cloud cover for a roof,  I might reap

possession of myself, a portal to the unseen.






  1. Judging from the image, the harp would be a smaller one than most I have seen. Few people could tuck one of those under one arm and go strolling. The last verse is a fine summation.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wendy,

    Your poem reminds me so much of Janis JOplin. She used to carry her autoharp wherever she went, even to class when she was in college, and she was known to break into song without regard for professor or peer pressure. (of course she wore jeans, but the air of freedom of this poem just captures her soul for me)

    I love the beach, especially in winter when it’s deserted except for the breeze and maybe a random shore bird or gull.

    The poem is brilliant in my opinion, and so very moving. I can taste the salt air. It makes me soar. Thank you…and a very Merry Christmas to you and yours.



  3. “If I could carry my craft against my rib —

    alder wood against maiden bone, I would sense

    the weight of being all song.”

    Cool read. Ditto Sarah’s salt in the air. All the best of the holiday season.



  4. Dear Michael, Sarah, Craig and Parker

    Thank you all so much for reading and commenting on this poem!! I deeply appreciate your kind words and interest in this piece! A harpist from French Brittany inspired this poem. Her name is Cecile Corbel and definitely worth listening to. Some of her songs can be found on youtube!!

    Again Merry Chrismas and Thanks so much!!

    My Best


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s