Wishes in the Snow: Ekphrastic Challenge

For Paul Brookes Special January-February Ekphrastic Challenge January 7- February 6. This is for February 3, and my poem is inspired by the three works below.

Wishes in the Snow

We ran from the soldiers, out into the snow,
into the birch forest, there by the trees,
where blood bloomed like flowers, red in the snow—
and I wondered if we’d be caught first–or freeze.

We ran from the soldiers, out into the snow–
Manya whispered stories of when women were fish,
and as the cold wind continued to blow,
she told of sea-blue wonders and a come-true wish

of times and people long ago—
before the snow.

We ran from the soldiers, out into the snow,
and I wished for roses, sunshine, birds, sheep,
but we were here, and where would we go?
Where would we find food, a warm place to sleep?

We ran from the soldiers, out into the snow,
and I dreamed of butterflies, apples, the song
of thrush and soft owl hoots, the way a river flows
in spring, and fish swim in it all along

the way to the sea,
where maybe we could be—

but we’ve run so far, out into the snow,
now Manya says, “Look, there’s a house ahead,”
inside, no people, only gifts bestowed–
a sea-scene painted, a rose, and a loaf of bread.

I’m also linking this to dVerse, where Björn asked us to write about war. It’s another work in progress. I have a story in my head about these people in this poem, but I want to leave it open to interpretation.

49 thoughts on “Wishes in the Snow: Ekphrastic Challenge

  1. Oh my aching heart this is evocative. Especially moved by; “We ran from the soldiers, out into the snow, and I wished for roses, sunshine, birds, sheep, but we were here, and where would we go?” 💝💝

  2. Oh Merril! This is …. I want a better word, but I have poignant right now. Yet, it’s so much better than that. It’s heart, it’s history and it’s figuratively now.
    I’m so impressed.
    I saw images of the war of 1828, but I was never there.

  3. Their prayers were answered, as they found this place against all odds. I’m looking at it from the perspective of if they are telling the story they survived it. Suspense turning into relief and so well done, Merril.

  4. pristine white snow….blood (red)….roses (red)….apple (red). The repetition of “We ran from the soldiers…far out into the snow” takes me deeper and deeper into the poem…into the escape…and the haven we find at the end with the repetition of the images just takes my breath away. A beautiful write.

  5. Pingback: Whispers in the Wind-2 – Yesterday and today: Merril's historical musings

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