Fade to Black (Speakeasy #146)

Fade to Black
Fade to Black
While days and nights of eons fade to black,
The same, sad swallow-song pervades my soul
“I sat there and waited, but he never came back.”

Sitcoms’ sputter; and laugh tracks’ bellow-brash,
Can’t smother smooth the sulfur stench of coal,
While days and nights of eons fade to black.

My soul’s soliloquy is crassly crashed
By “Contrafibularity”, how droll,
“I sat there and waited, but he never came back.”

He vowed someday that he’d return, my heart to clasp,
The promised wait, endurable as toll,
While days and nights of eons fade to black.

In slate-steel blue, his eyes shone unabashed,
Seducing me with guile; his craft ‘control’,
“I sat there and waited, but he never came back.”

Mephisto in the flesh, all others could behold,
save my deluded soul; I, blinded, held fast,
While days and nights of eons fade to black,
“I sat there and waited, but he never came back.”

This “Villanelle”* was written for The Speakeasy #146.

The Prompt:

“This week, the video is a scene from the British comedy show, Blackadder the Third. …This clip is called “C is for Contrafibularity.”

“I sat there and waited, but he never came back.”

*”The highly structured villanelle is a nineteen-line poem with two repeating rhymes and two refrains. The form is made up of five tercets followed by a quatrain. The first and third lines of the opening tercet are repeated alternately in the last lines of the succeeding stanzas; then in the final stanza, the refrain serves as the poem’s two concluding lines. Using capitals for the refrains and lowercase letters for the rhymes, the form could be expressed as: A1 b A2 / a b A1 / a b A2 / a b A1 / a b A2 / a b A1 A2.”

(Excerpted from poets.org (http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/5796)

26 Comments on “Fade to Black (Speakeasy #146)

  1. I’ve done a couple of forms that require the repetition of lines, though not this particular one yet, and they are very challenging even when freed from the constraints of prompts. You pulled this off wonderfully!

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  2. Beautifully written…the rolling tempo was like the echo of waves upon the shore. Love it!

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  3. You picked a perfect picture for this poem — it read like waves coming up on the sand and flowing back. Very nice use of the form.

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  4. Nice use of such a structured form! I love this line: “Can’t smother smooth the sulfur stench of coal” – wonderfully done! 🙂

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    • Thanks, Karen. The Villanelle form dictates repetition, but in this case the line itself was so beautifully intense that repetition enhanced it’s meaning…for me. Thank you for your feedback.

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  5. Wow. Reminds me of poems from Ireland and England from centuries past. Great command of words….you should publish this poem, honest!

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  6. Joanne, it’s so cool that you did a villanelle! What a challenge. I wasn’t familiar with the form and appreciate that you adopted it for this challenge.

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    • Lauren,
      Thanks…I’ve only done a few myself, so it’s quite a change to adhere to the form. Once you get started, it actually makes sense. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Your feedback is appreciated.

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