Last week I noticed a poem shared by Blue Diode Press on Twitter. ‘Meditation’, by Eunice De Souza, appeared in the collection A Necklace of Skulls: Collected Poems (Penguin).
The poem’s first two lines leapt out at me:
The lonely ask too much and then
I love how the form reflects its content: how these two lines mirror what they’re describing.
All those words (relatively) crammed into that first line, in haste and at too great length; only to fall away into the sad stump of the second.
How differently it would read if the line break fell in the obvious place – after ‘too much’. I really FEEL it this way.
I see a baby who cries and cries, then gives up crying.
I also think about ideas I’ve explored before – people thinking they know what they want (read ‘lack’) but that familiar yearning masking an ambivalence, or terror.
I explore similar concerns myself – to all of these – in The Girl Who Cried.
Because I can feel I’ve spent my life rushing towards people, then retreating. Asking ‘too much and then / too little’.
So there it is: the magic.
A whole lifetime’s dilemma distilled – understood, reflected back – in two short lines of poetry.