Old Benjamin

Old Benjamin

A Poem by Phibby Venable

Old Benjamin

It does no good to smile.
Your winter mouth clusters now
into a point of precision
Fireflies of entangled seasons
seat you forgetful to the tendrils
of passion & prime.
There is an enormous night
that everyone assures you
is heaven
You are troubled by bones,
crosses, the color of leaves
There is a thicket in your head
with a maze and an abyss
Somewhere, a stripped mine
of information & love
shadows the one flower
 you meant to remember,
a suave you, a shy her,
a touch of silk & the sound
of a rose harp in whispers.
You remember that nothing
restrained you.
There is a boulder of moss
where she leans & you touch
her hair and small brow
you touch...
Untie my hands, you call,
to someone passing by
Someone answers,
Stop shouting,be still.

© 2009 Phibby Venable

My Review

Would you like to review this Poem?
Login | Register


[send message][befriend] Subscribe
to begin, i think there may be an error when you write "an abbysses" i cannot tell if you meant to say "an abyss" "and abysses" or "an abyss is". perhaps, you meant it as it is.

for some reason, i find a great mysticism in senility. it might be the silence, it might be the sadness, it might be the mind that holds more years than any of us could fathom and more souls than any of us could ever meet. they are the wisest of us all, but they choose not to show it.
benjamin enraptures me.

Posted 15 Years Ago

The highlight of this worded picture of a man? The stripped mine of information! It's all painted as poetically perfect as ever. (probably took you less than five minutes). nicely penned Phib

Posted 15 Years Ago

I will never forget the man who lived in the same room as my Grandpa so many years ago. His name was Charley. And his shoes were size 13D. I know that Charley smiles somewhere now.

Posted 15 Years Ago

I just know, after reading only two of your poems, you are one terrific poet. You not only have the fluidity of words and images, but you elicit much emotion in those who read your poems. Why don't you submit some of your work to one of the best poetry sites I know? http://www.poetrymagazine.com
I've been published myself there and love it.
I think they'll love your work.


Posted 15 Years Ago

a great read - really interesting. I'm not going to to try and explain the poem like everyone else here, but that its safe to say the rigidity and stifled hardness of the poem is comparable to, if not actually, loss and regret (according to love or beauty especially).

"There is a thicket in your head
with a maze and an abysses" --- do you mean abyss here?

"There are plenty of great images in here, i particularly like these lines:
Fireflies of entangled seasons
seat you forgetful to the tendrils
of passion & prime." -- this is great but a bit fuzzily worded

great read, sorry this is so short (i wanted to go on) but i typed up a long review and it got deleted accidentally, so keep writing and sharing,

Posted 15 Years Ago

My father, and for that matter my grandfather, both suffered the ravages of Alzheimers disease. I'm not really sure what the theme of this poem actually is, but that it what it speaks to me. Old age, a desire to remember your loved ones, but all that you knew and all that you were is tied away in some rarely accessible corner of your mind and you would like nothing better than to have them back. Thanks for sharing.

Posted 15 Years Ago

A wonderful, intelligent evocation of being shut off from the world. I have experience of this through one of my close relatives. This is quite simply a stunning walk through the mind.

Posted 15 Years Ago

I just saw the movie The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and the first person p.o.v. of living inside the aged body and psyche in contrast to the energy and activity of the "ripe" world was deeply impressed upon me. This poem does the same. I agree with W.k. kortas. You capture the tenderness of this story without going too far. Those last lines, too, are the perfect completion.

Posted 15 Years Ago

Loved it. You are a very good poet indeed

Posted 15 Years Ago

I may be off on this, but..."Untie my hands" suggests to me someone in a nursing care facility, or perhaps even a psych ward. It is a wonderful portrait of that time of an earthly limbo between the living and dead, and it is full to the gills of masterful imagery, and it is sympathetic and touching without being syrupy and kitten-cute. It is top-shelf stuff, without question.

Posted 15 Years Ago

Share This
Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


10 Reviews
Added on January 11, 2009
Last Updated on March 8, 2009


Phibby Venable
Phibby Venable

abingdon, VA

http://youtu.be/25XE-BHGvWI http://youtu.be/B2klgDKMUq0 I live in the mountains of Southwest Virginia. Although my passion is poetry, I recently published a novel called, Women of the Round Tabl.. more..


Related Writing

People who liked this story also liked..