I’m trying something new. While still poetry, this remains a departure from my normal patterns. Simply write a poem for the week, with whatever meaning quivers inside me, and put it on display. For this project I am experimenting with something larger. A multi-part poem. Each tied to the larger tale, a story to carry you onward. Each of a piece, yet greater together. Episodic.

Part of the intent of this project is to try to explore storytelling using poetry as the medium. The plan going in is 8 parts. Each able to take on a different style, not bound…

Last year, late in March (after the pandemic sent me home from the office, a place I have yet to return to but once), I set myself a goal. To release a poem each and every day for an entire year. I would try to write at least one poem a day, but missed days could be made up with effort on others, whether from inspiration or sheer refusal to stop until I wrote something.

It all began with a poem I wrote and shared with friends on discord. A poem about the thoughts I felt, driving home from work…

Endings commonly mirror beginnings, a reverberation where the notes sound better for having been through the brunt of the matter. And so references are made back to how she felt as she left, buried and lost and without hope for her future, before a godling found her and took her away.

But he also left her behind to suffer at the hands of darkness, and only she proved able to free herself. And once done, she found the strength to help those lost people save themselves. Find their own peace.

And now, knowing her inner strength, her life blooms all…

Soundcloud link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/renewal

The end comes nigh as the story begins to wind down. She’s stolen the gem and given the forces of light an opening to come, and so they came. But she also knows she cannot be the one to bring final victory, even if her place in the weave of the story made it possible. Salvation only truly comes from the self.

A simple x-a-x-a rhymes scene, no particular meter. It felt right to go simple so close to the end, while I also intend to return to free verse for the end, a return to the…

Soundcloud link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/saga-of-rivers-and-shadows-retribution

I made a first attempt at this poem the Sunday before it went live. It was a three line stanza structure, but otherwise fairly freeform. And it simply felt out of sync with the rest of the poem. To the point I won’t do what I’ve done several times before and show the first pass. It needs to remain dead and gone.

This also proved to be the poem I’ve struggled the most to record in a very long time, if not ever. At least fifteen attempts, and when at least two of those I got to…

Soundcloud link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/saga-of-rivers-and-shadows-restitution

She has escaped from under the Shadow’s sway, and wanders the land, lost and in pain. Found by a soldier, he brings her before the king, who offers to punish his subject that abandoned her. Yet, instead her pain gives her compassion, whether deserved or not.

The structure of the poem is known as a Ghazal. An Arabic style, it keeps a consistent syllable count per line, and every couplet ends with a repeated word or phrase. An echo that keeps everything on track. Feeling her pain even as she offers herself up to save them all…

Soundcloud link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/rebirth

I ended up going with a less restrictive form for part 4, allowing a much greater range of freedom. This made the writing harder in other ways as the lack of restriction gave too much breadth of space to explore.

Specifically I went with the form called The Bop, as documented here
https://www.writersdigest.com/write-better-poetry/poetic-form-the-bop

The refrain felt useful to keep coming back around to her need to not allow fear to crush her, as our heroine escapes the land claimed by shadows, and find her way beyond their influence once more. Echoes allow the mind to circle a…

Soundcloud link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/saga-of-rivers-and-shadows-death

Darkness reigns over our heroine now. Captured after her lover fled without her, she finds herself in the captive hands of the dark force that seeks to rule this world. Meant as a sacrifice, she is bound to a tree as a way to taint the earth and help claim it.

I decided to try something weird form mixing a poetic structure called Cywddd Llosgyrnog (yes it is Welsh) with haiku. The basic idea is a back and forth between the world (the CLs) and her reaction (the haiku). CL appealed because it mixed end rhyme and…

Soundcloud Link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/saga-of-rivers-and-shadows-found

This poem is (mostly) at a moment of dreams and hope, before the coming of shadows. When love feels as if it can win out, over a lifetime of pain and steal away all that she wished that she lost.

But, as is often the case: good things struggle to last. Shadows rise, hope runs out of wax and burns the hand that holds it, leaving the holder uncertain what to believe about the light that shone.

Fighting with the Shakespearean Sonnet form (I know I used it far from perfectly) gave me a great deal of…

Soundcloud Link: https://soundcloud.com/wizardofwestmarch/riversandshadowslost

This is part 1 of the poem. A woman trapped in a life she never foresaw, feeling unable to escape. Trapped, she looks for solace in a walk, only to be reminded of how trapped she is.

Until.

Someone finds her there, someone unlike she has ever met. Someone not of this world, yet with power and the heart to see her burden and offer her a hand. A chance to break free.

But doubt is always looming, once trapped in the whorls that never seem to let go, the mind afraid things will become all the…

WizardofWestmarch

Writer of code and fiction.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store