Antonia’s Song

by Evelyn Hooven (June 2016)

(This is from my verse play Celestial Lullaby. The spirit of Antonia seeks to comfort her mourning mother. The mood is ghostly, dream-like.)

 

Oh, Mother, do not bury with me

Confirmation veil or wedding dress.

I’ll need neither olive nor figs

Nor bread nor mineral water,

Neither gifts that nourish

Nor tokens of honor—

This is a journey:

One who was motionless and prone

Becomes an explorer—

Timid at first, then eager,

Lost halfway through

The astounding expedition

Then finding her way.

There you sit—

Blankets and earthenware,

Shirred muslin,

This wood, forced to brightness

By repetition of gesture,

Sheen of, film of—

Is it shroud or veil?

 

Death’s not a jilting, Mother,

Though I won’t be marrying a man

Right as rain

Reliable as stone—

Death is a journey through waters,

Without a compass

Like a sailor’s

Or an astronomer’s glass,

Death is a journey alone.

Build if you will

A careful tomb

The only home maintained with roses

And chrysanthemums—

But I must cross these borders,

Home tools are no use.

 

Build if you will

A careful tomb

The only home

Maintained with roses

To mitigate the taste

Of a near-consuming dust. . .

But whether you embalm or scatter

Is all the same to me.  .  .  .

 

The one dream of the dead

The end of all dreaming

Is to awaken new

And full of blessing

Entirely elsewhere.

 

____________________________

 

Evelyn Hooven graduated from Mount Holyoke College and received her M.A. from Yale University, where she also studied at The Yale School of Drama.  A member of the Dramatists’ Guild, she has had presentations of her verse dramas at several theatrical venues, including The Maxwell Anderson Playwrights Series in Greenwich, CT (after a state-wide competition) and The Poet’s Theatre in Cambridge, MA (result of a national competition). Her poems and translations from the French have appeared in ART TIMES, Chelsea, The Literary Review, THE SHOp: A Magazine of Poetry (in Ireland), The Tribeca Poetry Review, Vallum (in Montreal), and other journals, and her literary criticism in Oxford University’s Essays in Criticism.

 

To comment on this poem, please click here.

To help New English Review continue to publish moving and thought provoking poems such as this, please click here.

If you have enjoyed this poem by Evelyn Hooven and want to read more of her work, please click here.

 

 


Pre-order at Amazon or Amazon UK today!

Order at Amazon or Amazon UK

Order on Amazon.or Amazon UK.


Amazon donates to World Encounter Institute Inc when you shop at smile.amazon.com/ch/56-2572448. #AmazonSmile #StartWithaSmile

Subscribe

Categories

Adam Selene (2) A.J. Caschetta (7) Ahnaf Kalam (2) Alexander Murinson (1) Andrew Harrod (4) Anne-Christine Hoff (1) Bat Ye'or (6) Bradley Betters (1) Brex I Teer (9) Brian of London (32) Carol Sebastian (1) Christina McIntosh (864) Christopher DeGroot (2) Conrad Black (597) Daniel Mallock (5) David J. Baldovin (1) David P. Gontar (7) David Solway (78) David Wemyss (1) Dexter Van Zile (74) Dr. Michael Welner (3) E. B Samuel (1) Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff (1) Emmet Scott (1) Eric Rozenman (7) Esmerelda Weatherwax (9728) Fergus Downie (23) Fred Leder (1) Friedrich Hansen (7) G. Murphy Donovan (71) G. Tod Slone (1) Gary Fouse (159) Geert Wilders (13) Geoffrey Botkin (1) Geoffrey Clarfield (330) George Rojas (1) Hannah Rubenstein (3) Hesham Shehab and Anne-Christine Hoff (1) Hossein Khorram (2) Howard Rotberg (13) Hugh Fitzgerald (21162) Ibn Warraq (10) Ilana Freedman (2) James Como (23) James Robbins (1) James Stevens Curl (2) Janice Fiamengo (1) jeffrey burghauser (1) Jenna Wright (1) Jerry Gordon (2516) Jerry Gordon and Lt. Gen. Abakar M. Abdallah (2) Jesse Sandoval (1) John Constantine (122) John Hajjar (5) John M. Joyce (391) John Rossomando (1) Jonathan Ferguson (1) Jonathan Hausman (4) Jordan Cope (1) Joseph S. Spoerl (10) Kenneth Francis (2) Kenneth Hanson (1) Kenneth Lasson (1) Kenneth Timmerman (27) Lorna Salzman (9) Louis Rene Beres (37) Manda Zand Ervin (1) Marc Epstein (9) Mark Anthony Signorelli (11) Mark Durie (7) Mark Zaslav (1) Mary Jackson (5065) Matthew Hausman (44) Matthew Stewart (1) Michael Curtis (667) Michael Rechtenwald (21) Mordechai Nisan (2) Moshe Dann (1) NER (2590) New English Review Press (87) Nidra Poller (73) Nikos A. Salingaros (1) Nonie Darwish (10) Norman Berdichevsky (86) Paul Oakley (1) Paul Weston (5) Paula Boddington (1) Peter McGregor (1) Peter McLoughlin (1) Philip Blake (1) Phyllis Chesler (139) Rebecca Bynum (7197) Richard Butrick (24) Richard Kostelanetz (16) Richard L. Benkin (21) Richard L. Cravatts (7) Richard L. Rubenstein (44) Robert Harris (85) Sally Ross (36) Sam Bluefarb (1) Samuel Chamberlain (1) Sha’i ben-Tekoa (1) Springtime for Snowflakes (4) Stacey McKenna (1) Stephen Schecter (1) Steve Hecht (27) Ted Belman (8) The Law (90) Theodore Dalrymple (892) Thomas J. Scheff (6) Thomas Ország-Land (3) Tom Harb (4) Tyler Curtis (1) Walid Phares (32) Winfield Myers (1) z - all below inactive (7) z - Ares Demertzis (2) z - Andrew Bostom (74) z - Andy McCarthy (536) z - Artemis Gordon Glidden (881) z - DL Adams (21) z - John Derbyshire (1013) z - Marisol Seibold (26) z - Mark Butterworth (49) z- Robert Bove (1189) zz - Ali Sina (2)
clear
Site Archive