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The dying of the light

A quatern for dverse.

This is the dying of the light

This is the dying of the light,
the final glow before the night
enfolds us in its blind embrace,
my fingers memorise your face,

its planes and angles, in touch-sight.
This is the dying of the light,
When every dog and cat is grey
as shadows on a sunless day,

the time when dog and wolf are merged,
’twixt moon and sun, in pools submerged.
This is the dying of the light,
when daybirds huddle close in fright.

A rose is dreaming on a stem,
in sun’s last rays a thorny gem,
as petals, crucibled, ignite—
this too is dying of the light.

Author: Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

44 thoughts on “The dying of the light”

  1. A stunning Quatern, Jane! The rhyming is perfect, I love the way the poem shifts like light, and especially the lines:
    my fingers memorise your face,
    its planes and angles, in touch-sight’
    ‘the time when dog and wolf are merged,
    ’twixt moon and sun, in pools submerged’.


      1. The rose in the photo is one of several cuttings I took in autumn 2018 and planted out the following year. The bushes are huge now and flower all year round. It’s a rose that was planted by the mother of the old lad who lived here before us. He was born here before WWI. They were very poor tenant farmers and the rose was the only flowering plant they had. A bit of frivolity in a hard life. It’s an incredible one, vigorous, scented and flowers even in January.


      2. For someone prepared to do the historical research. Each small region has its particularities that you don’t find anywhere else. Very few people here claim to be ‘native’, having only lived here for a few generations. The ‘Suisse’ (only lived here since the 18th century) up the road said the old couple here were the only true Gascons around here. The rest were all incomers.


      3. Time ticks to a different beat in the countryside. It can leave a person feeling quite detached. I hope that’s not something you experience because it’s not enjoyable.


      4. I’m sure it’s true everywhere. We make assumptions about people based on appearance, accent, lifestyle, and when it doesn’t add up to the expected auto-portrait, we don’t know quite what to make of them. In France, if you have lots of children you’re very poor and poorly educated, very rich and well-educated or very Catholic. We don’t fit any of the moulds and it unsettles people.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Yes, it is everywhere. My husband and I both have accents, and people who don’t know us, always ask “Where are you from?” or “Are you visiting?” or my old dentist always said “When you go back home, I’ll note this in your records ….” And we’ve lived in Sussex for 34-years and in this house for 29-years. Interestingly, in our neighbourhood every family but one speaks with an accent; we are from all over the world, and with different traditions. I do actually love living here.


      6. When everyone is foreign it makes it easier. We’re foreign, but anyone from 50kms away is also foreign, and I don’t think we’re any more suspect than they are. I find the local people easy to get on with. They don’t care about anything, in the sense of being completely irerverant. You can talk politics and religion with any random person you pass in the lane, have heated arguments, which I appreciate. But they don’t toss out insincere invitations to come round ‘sometime’. That’s just for family.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful, especially the last stanza. I really like that one with the dreaming rose and “as petals, crucibled, ignite—”
    Of course, dying of the light made me think of Dylan Thomas, too.

    We both wrote in meter and rhyme. So odd. 🙂


    1. Dylan Thomas does have a claim on that phrase, it’s true 🙂
      Thank you! I reworked this poem from one I’d already written, but I kept the last stanza. I like it too 🙂
      I’m still not able to like your posts. I tried to follow you but it didn’t work. I thought I’d got rid of these problems. Do you think you could check and see if you’re following my new blog? Otherwise, we’re back to square one…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 😔
        I hope you can figure this out. The only thing I saw is that sometimes there’s a problem if you follow from Reader rather than the post? I hope you’re able to figure it out.


  3. Love your refrain of : This is the dying of the light and the rhyming verses too Jane. That last stanza is just lovely, with a focus on the rose. You write effortlessly to poetry forms.


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