"Love's Messenger" by Marie Spartali Stillman‘How Can We Know?’ and Other Poetry by Caroline Bardwell The Society April 17, 2018 Beauty, Poetry 19 Comments How Can We Know? A villanelle How can we know where we go when we die; Pondering signs, looking up at the sky, Wondering if Someone’s hearing my cry? Which religion is right, which one a lie? Too much in common to outright deny; How can we know where we go when we die? Can things exist I don’t see with my eye? I’m not the only one that’s asking why; Wondering if Someone’s hearing my cry. If my God is real and He reigns on high, Then life has a purpose that money can’t buy. How can we know where we go when we die? Do you have the answers? Sorry to pry, I sit here no matter how hard I try, Wondering if Someone’s hearing my cry. Questions persist as I let out a sigh, Searching for answers, yet time passes by, How can we know where we go when we die; Wondering if Someone’s hearing my cry? If My Garden Will Grow A villanelle How will I know if my garden will grow? Rise with the dawn as the rooster does crow; It will take time till you reap what you sow. You’ll need some seeds so there’s something to hoe; Grouped in an order, arranged in a row. How will I know if my garden will grow? Have enough water, above and below – More than a trickle, you’ll want it to flow; It will take time till you reap what you sow. Watch out for fauna, both rabbit and doe; they eat new leaves and will fast be your foe. How will I know if my garden will grow? Perhaps try a scarecrow, if you can sew, So that those creatures will come and then go. It will take time till you reap what you sow. It’s really hard work, not free from woe; You’ll catch on, before long you’ll be a pro. How will I know if my garden will grow? It will take time till you reap what you sow. Caroline Bardwell is a resident and native of upstate New York. She is a professional geologist, a mother, a woman of faith and a lover of music, art, literature and nature. She has a great appreciation for the structural guidelines and musicality of formal verse. Views expressed by individual poets and writers on this website and by commenters do not represent the views of the entire Society. The comments section on regular posts is meant to be a place for civil and fruitful discussion. Pseudonyms are discouraged. The individual poet or writer featured in a post has the ability to remove any or all comments by emailing submissions@ classicalpoets.org with the details and under the subject title “Remove Comment.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related 19 Responses Jenni Wyn Hyatt April 17, 2018 I love the villanelle – and these are certainly questions that I ask, too. Thank you, Caroline. Reply Joe Tessitore April 17, 2018 How can we know? ’cause Jesus tells us so: “Blessed are they who have not seen…” and How will I know if my garden will grow? you can plant a seed and you can watch it grow but you can’t have a guarantee ’cause everything that ought to be ain’t necessarily so Willie Nelson Loved them both! Well done Caroline! Reply E. V. April 17, 2018 These are two beautiful Villanelles that I enjoyed reading. Please continue writing Villanelles and, of course, publishing them on the website! Reply Trevor Siggers April 17, 2018 Hello Caroline Beautiful lines all in both poems that have a thread that connects your themes. Love the way you use a repeating question. The English playwright, Alan Bennett, made these two observations that you find resonates with you and your two poems here: “I write plays about things that I can’t resolve in my mind. I try to root things out”; “Life is like a box of sardines and we are all looking for the key.” Thank you for sharing these pieces and best wishes. Trevor Reply Amy Foreman April 17, 2018 Really enjoyed these musical villanelles, Caroline! I look forward to seeing more of your work! Reply David Paul Behrens April 17, 2018 Very intriguing poems, Caroline. Here’s one I wrote a few years ago: HOPING FOR ETERNITY You are born and then you die. Life consists of the days between. Live and love, laugh and cry, The source of it stays unseen. As you grow, you never know How you came to be alive. You only know, the row you hoe Will help you to survive. Your organism will die some day, Like a flower, a dolphin or bird. As you pray to stay some way, Eternal souls may be absurd. Born into this world of wonder, Full of colors and infinity, Amid rain and sounds of thunder, Hoping to exist for eternity. For the record, I absolutely believe we are all part of something that has always been here and will exist forever. Not just part of something, we ARE the something. Thank you for sharing these profound thoughts. Reply Charles Southerland April 17, 2018 Real nice work, Caroline. Reply Caroline Bardwell April 17, 2018 Hi everyone! Very pleased to be selected and thank you all for your wonderful comments and references. The Society was technically my first acceptance though others were printed while it was in the queue. I have been trying a variety of forms (Pantoum, sestina, rondeau, ghazal) and submitting them to other markets to gauge reception. I’m new to the game but thrilled to join in the fun. Reply Amber Jasmine Stephens April 29, 2018 Leslie referred me to look you up and I love what I read. I am a poet aswell Nd new to sharing my work. Your exploration of different writing styles has inspired me. Thank you. Reply Caroline Bardwell April 29, 2018 Thank you Amber! She said she gave you my card. Janine Fox April 18, 2018 Well done Caroline! These are beautiful and I am so proud of you! Reply Sathyanarayana April 18, 2018 Beautiful villanelles, great thoughts. Reply C.B. Anderson April 18, 2018 Caroline, There is usually a B rhyme in a villanelle. You used the A rhyme throughout. I don’t know whether this makes it something other than a villanelle or not, but these two are mono-rhymes throughout, which may simply increase the degree of difficulty. Reply Caroline Bardwell April 19, 2018 Yes, I have written some with the b rhyme as prescribed, but since I’ve seen a lot of license taken with the English version of some these forms (e.g villanelle, ghazal), I felt it could still be classified as such, especially with the 10 syllables each line, and the standard repetition. Keeping the A rhyme had a great overall effect to me for both poems. And I like to challenge myself to see what I can do. Reply James Sale April 19, 2018 I love villanelles too – thank you! Reply David Hollywood April 20, 2018 Lovely poetry. Thank you. Reply David Watt April 23, 2018 Thank you Caroline. I really enjoyed your thoughtful villanelles. Reply Satyananda Sarangi April 26, 2018 Dear Caroline, greetings! It is indeed thrilling to read your villanelles – I fell in love with them I must confess. Really thoughtful ones. Best wishes for more success ahead. Waiting to read more of you. Reply Caroline Bardwell April 29, 2018 Thank you so much! Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.