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I feel always like I am starting over.

As a magpie I gather trinkets under my pillow,
bay leaves and bags of herbs to bring the next lover to me,
to call the next dream-face forward—a picture
painted in the tea leaves.

But truth be told the start-again
is never clean, is never gentle,
and the sweat of all that labour
is a fire on my skin, telling me
I will never resist its wind-cry.

The moon comes when I call, to help me;
midwife, she is, and she carries into being my new selves
like the babes they are, teaches them to
fill long footsteps like hers.

Truth be told, I tire of the destiny
I was given once—I am a teacup,
and I cling close to my china womb,
to my cup tipped over, upset
by careless elbows.

I imagine Mother Moon climbing her way back to me
on the backs of pine trees, sweeping across the Appalachians.
Written for a lit-mag theme of "Tabula Rasa" and for my 100 Poem Project theme of "Divination."

Since I am submitting this to a literary and arts anthology, I'd really, REALLY appreciate all the feedback you can offer.

I'm not sure the piece is evocative enough or flows well. You may recognize a few chunks of it from my sketch Anatomy of a Teacup and from NaPoWriMo Day 6.

All comments most welcome. Please comment!

EDIT: OMIGAWD A DD! Thank you so much to *riparii for suggesting and ^Beccalicious for featuring! :D
:iconcheerplz:
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Daily Deviation

Given 2012-09-17
:iconfalcorn0squirrel:
falcorn0squirrel Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
lovely imagery, i love the pace you set.
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you!
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:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2012  Professional Writer
-*I am so glad this got a DD! It's amazing! It paints such lovely pictures in my mind. Congrats!
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks, m'dear :)
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2012  Professional Writer
Welcome. :)
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:iconkarinta:
Karinta Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2012  Student General Artist
It's very very nice.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks :)
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:iconkarinta:
Karinta Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2012  Student General Artist
You're welcome.
Reply
:iconspider123357:
spider123357 Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Student Writer
Why do I automatically think pig?
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I do not know
Reply
:iconultimamage578:
UltimaMage578 Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012
I kind of like actually how specific you are. If I were just left to infer a bird, I probably would have chosen the wrong bird, due to many birds existing. Particularly in the Appalachians.

I actually like the first line. I feel like that line is very indicative of who the piece is for.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks very much :)
Reply
:iconultimamage578:
UltimaMage578 Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012
Welcomes!
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:iconlit-twitter:
Lit-Twitter Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012
Chirp, congrats on the DD, it's been twittered. [link] :)
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks very much!
Reply
:iconarchelyxs:
archelyxs Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012
Yay!
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:)
Reply
:iconvespera:
vespera Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
"I cling close to my china womb" OH wonderful!
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you very much! :)
Reply
:icondactik:
Dactik Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Student Filmographer
This is beautiful. <3 But I have to agree with a few others who have commented on the first line- it feels stunted and doesn't flow like the rest of the poem. I also confess to being a little confused in relation to "As a magpie", which at first I thought had a literal meaning. Perhaps "Like a magpie" would work better? Anyway, all minor criticisms in comparison to the poem as a whole; the last two stanzas are perfect.
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you so much! I have definitely been intending to edit the piece - I wasn't expecting to get a DD for it, so I hadn't made sure it was in the best possible shape!

Thanks so much for your kind comment :)
Reply
:iconriparii:
riparii Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012
Oh hurray. :) Very happy to see this featured.
Reply
:iconi-too-am-karamazov:
i-too-am-karamazov Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012
I agree with *riparii. The first line gets the ax. But I think it's equally important that the next clause "as a magpie" get the ax - heavyhanded exposition. Let us infer some kind of bird for our readerly selves.

The last two stanzas need work. The celebratory tone of the fourth one makes "Truth be told, I tire" feel forced, a sudden reversal; I feel a little whiplash because of it.

So I've been playing around with it. Here's one possibility:

like the babes they are, teaches them to
fill long footsteps like hers.

Mother Moon, climbing your way back to me
on the backs of pine trees, sweeping across the Appalachians,
I am a teacup clinging close to your china womb.


I can't help feeling though that the really powerful image is the moon as a teacup and that the crow as a teacup interferes with our reading it as a crow.

The second, third and fourth stanzas are quite magnificent and I wouldn't change anything about them.
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Although I do have to ask: you seem to think I should change who has a teacup womb? Is that part of the poem confusing? And I did not visualize myself as a bird throughout the entire piece...should I change to "Like a magpie" to make that less confusing? So that I am still me but have the characteristics of a magpie?

I'm sorry, I understand what you're saying about a crow with a teacup sounding weird, but I didn't picture it like that in my head, so I just want to make sure I'm conveying my image properly ;)
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:iconi-too-am-karamazov:
i-too-am-karamazov Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2012
Ah, well.

I read it as an extended metaphor in which the speaker is a magpie. Everything pointed that way until the fifth stanza and indeed that is where I ran into problems.

It's hard to imagine "the moon comes when I call" as anything other than the crow's caw.

The real problem with the speaker's having a metaphorical womb is that we see him gathering stuff to attract a mate in the second stanza and that is always the prerogative of the male bird.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Hmmmmmm. That is very interesting. This is not the first time I have had someone assume a male speaker when I am speaking from a female perspective. Is there something in the style that makes it "masculine" or is it really just the fact that only male magpies collect things?
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:iconi-too-am-karamazov:
i-too-am-karamazov Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012
Not the style. Just the fact that male birds gather things to attract a mate.
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Gotcha. Thanks for that clarification, and thanks for the input :)
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks very much for your feedback! :) I see what you mean about the whiplash; I'll definitely take another look at that section.
Reply
:iconriparii:
riparii Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012
This is beautiful. The imagery is rich, vivid, exotic, aromatic and deep-colored.
The only quibble I have is the first line, "I feel always like I am starting over."
It doesn't give any information that is crucial to the piece, and the language is so plain
and ordinary after the promise of that exquisite title, that it took a tiny leap of faith to continue
reading, but I did, and for such a reward, the rest of the poem sparkles like a gem.
Really, I adore this.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you very much! I appreciate your feedback :)
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:icontheinspreneur:
TheInspreneur Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I adore the alliteration in the final parts of this piece.

"The moon comes when I call, to help me;
midwife, she is, and she carries into being my new selves"

Sublime.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you very much :)
Reply
:icontheinspreneur:
TheInspreneur Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You're most welcome.
Reply
:iconsammur-amat:
Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2012   General Artist
to call the next dream-face forward—a picture
painted in the tea leaves.


Did you know that in ancient Arab and Persian times, women too to reading the future through the remains of coffee in a coffee cup? This line just brings to life that bit of history and really, magnifies the volume of what it is you are trying to portray.

The moon comes when I call, to help me;
midwife, she is, and she carries into being my new selves


This line in particular somewhat reminded me of A Midsummer Night's Dream. The power of lunar light is mesmerizing and throughout cultures and bounds, people have always found magic in in the night's light.

Truth be told, I tire of the destiny
I was given once—I am a teacup,
and I cling close to my china womb,
to my cup tipped over, upset
by careless elbows.


The imagery of this is just flawless, my dear. I can almost feel for the teacup.

Yet another incredible piece by you, lovely creature. Please never ever stop writing and sharing your wonderful gift with the waking world. :huggle:
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you so much! I'm glad that you enjoyed it :) No, I didn't know that coffee dregs could also be used for divination. How interesting!

Thanks for taking the time to comment.
Reply
:iconsammur-amat:
Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2012   General Artist
Well there you go, and how exquisite for it to just fit right into the message of your piece. :XD:

Oh, it was my pleasure entirely, sweet! :hug:
Reply
:iconarchelyxs:
archelyxs Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2012
I agree with Ender; I really dig the imagery. There's a suggested complexity beneath these words just showing enough to be stirring. This bit:
"she carries into being my new selves
like the babes they are, teaches them to
fill long footsteps like hers."
and
"I imagine Mother Moon climbing her way back to me
on the backs of pine trees, sweeping across the Appalachians."
are especially striking.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I'm so glad you liked it! Thanks so much :)
Reply
:iconender1980:
ender1980 Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
The imagery evoked is magnificent.
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks very much :)
Reply
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