The Swamp

The Swamp

A Poem by Fae

A poem featured in my self-published book.

Let us take ourselves
past the pondweed and the mangroves,
and delicately dip our toes in
icy water,
run through sinking mudflats
to see what we'll uncover
and hope no one discovers
where we have been,
even though the mud will be up to our knees,
let us wander through tall reeds and rushes
to the world of the untouchable -
to the land of things that can never be,
here we will sit and dream
and with our minds brushing through
the trees
catch ourselves innocently.

And poised with our hands gripping reeds,
fly to imaginary clouds
in skies which surround
someplace else
far away from here
where no one else is listening for
the sound a page makes when it's turned over.

Where people only value the words themselves,
we are here to delve deeper
into forbidden ground,
stepping lightly on stepping stones
to make no sound,
but drawing us closer to where the book is found.

"Do you see the people
as they come and go? Talking of Michelangelo?
Is there time to view the cicadas as
they dance through
waterlilies; they will never know
just how beautiful the flowers bloom.
Is there time to wade through grass-wort and
hawthorns without being
away for too long?"

He says, for he loves to take in riddles.
Can you hear each syllable
rolling off his tongue?
Such is the sound of a page
being ripped from the book spine.
And in speaking he makes noise
like wind ripping through reeds
and making them look more like liquid
than green stalks.
And he speaks with his hands;
I imagine
sending clouds fluttering
over the horizon with each wave.

"Can you hear the cattails singing?
Don't you hear the music ringing
in your ears from concerts vibrating
and dissapating
as they seem to do? They leave you
stunned when reading a poem,
speechless as you finish a sentence.
And with them I am making a list
of things which I'll say,
shall you be missed."

When his lips move,
his hair bounces to the beat of drums
for they are feathers which can vibrate
to any rhythm
and hide within them
families of herons and grebes.
Cawing to the same beat
as their hearts pump in sync,
and as yours sinks or
just stops altogether
as it has been known to do,
as The Swamp has been known to induce -

Writing is of no use
because does anyone really read?
Or simply look at the words and pick out of a hat
what they mean?
It's no use, you can dance back to green
grass stalks
among pondweed,
the pebbles and fishes and mangroves between
tranquility and being psychotic -
from the tall reeds
we must withdraw,
we must step away from
metaphors and similes -
catch ourselves and then come clean.

© 2015 Fae

Author's Note

Any feedback is much appreciated!

My Review

Would you like to review this Poem?
Login | Register


I like the mixture of the natural beauty of the swamp with the world of writing. Prufrok was something of a surprise, old, dry, dusty poem (first published in 1915) especially because the part quoted was from the old, dark city, the dust and yellow smoke, so out of place in the wet, green swamp world even though he does end up drowned by mermaids. But, this is the essence of the poem; Raw nature against words written on dead paper, brought to life through the speech of someone loved.
But, then the end ... between tranquility and being psychotic ... I am lost. The swamp was lively and not tranquil, neither Eliot nor your lover (I assume) brought tranquillity. Nor did they suggest psychosis.
we must step away from
metaphors and similes -
catch ourselves and then come clean - I have no idea where I am now! What have I missed? Return to the swamp and let the dry words go ... Catch ourselves? When did we run away? And then come clean! I don't even know what to ask.
I enjoyed the poem. I really did and I would like to have the end explained because the destination is of such great importance.

Posted 6 Years Ago


6 Years Ago

Hi! Thank you for your review. And for recognizing the little quotes from Prufrock!

.. read more

6 Years Ago

Ok, but, let us see what we will uncover ... this implies you (the person in the poem) are with some.. read more
Hello. Um.. I reviewed your other one, and I'm going to say the same thing.. There's a poem buried in it. Like flowers in a bush, rather than a flowerbed?

The end-rhymes is one thing. You've got some astonishing ones in here. 'where no one else is listening for/the sound a page makes when it's turned over' (so light, and yet..), then 'riddles' and 'syllable', and also 'rhythm' and 'within them'. But precisely because these are so persuasive, stuff like 'ground/found/sound', or 'knees/reeds/trees' feel a little heavy, to me. I'm not saying they're the wrong rhymes, but you could be more careful with them? Bearing in mind that they're keeping the whole thing moving.

There's also your use of 'in sync' and 'psychotic' where they appear towards the end of the poem. These seem a bit foreign to either the world of the swamp, or the world of metaphor you're moving into.

In general, if you could weave the different elements of this poem together more carefully - I feel like they all belong, but at times they're a little clustered - you'd bring it up a notch.

Regardless, I think this is a poem I'll carry with me a while. Thank you.

Posted 7 Years Ago

The imagery took me straight to the swamp. I could feel the reeds lace through my fingers and I could hear the pages whisper as I walked the path you took us on. This piece was beautifully done. It fit the guidelines of peculiar poetry wonderfully. I am so happy I could place you among the winning entries. Thank you for submitting! Angi~

Posted 8 Years Ago

Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


3 Reviews
Added on August 5, 2013
Last Updated on February 11, 2015
Tags: poetry, prose, free verse, love, prufrock, t.s. eliot, romanticism




If you love Green Day I love you. This text will be replaced by YoutubeTunePlayer var so = new SWFObject('','mpl','470','260','9'); so.addParam('all.. more..

The Collection The Collection

A Story by Fae

Vibrant Life Vibrant Life

A Poem by Fae

Advertise Here
Want to advertise here? Get started for as little as $5