My waning days give way
as dark besieges all my light.
My tree, its branches sway
in frigid Winter winds that bite!

So too, the chill consumes
me as my crackling hearth yet burns.
The flicker of my fire
bespeaks of warmth, yet none returns!

A shadow in the dark
I see, its specter drawing nigh.
And in my stormy throes
I hear a mournful banshee’s cry!

Then soft as fluttered wings,
her footsteps flew across the floor.
Her raven hair unkempt
beneath the tattered shawl she wore.

Her eyes of limpid pools,
reflecting deep into my essence.
No sound around just silence
and an eerie frigid presence!

Her weathered hands reached out
and then she pulled me to her face.
With icy lips of blue
she kissed, and shared my last embrace.

Tony L. Damigo ©



Tony Damingo is contributing poet and participant at local ‘Open Mic’ readings in the Crestview, Florida area. He is also a poet of the Society of Creative Anachronism; a Renaissance reenactment organization.

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4 Responses


    A very evocative piece of work, with a use of meter that manages to suggest a petrifying fear.
    The painting makes me wonder: are we talking about a banshee or a siren? Your poem actually seems to suggest a cross between the two.
    Two niggles. I suppose you gave a lot of thought to the exclamation points. I admit that 4 in 6 quatrains makes me uneasy. I also wondered about an adjective before “warmth,” replacing “of” in the wake of a transitive verb; but unless you come up with a strong one, it’s not worth the bother.
    Thanks for a distinctive contribution! (Exclamation point meant.)

    • C.B. Anderson

      Don’t ask for too much, J.D. Too much explanation can ruin a poem.

  2. Paul Oratofsky

    The first three stanzas are in the present tense, and then, in the fourth it’s suddenly in the past tense. That present tense was effective, so I’m not sure why you changed it. The fifth stanza could be present or past, but the last one remains in the past. There are other odd ways of putting things here, that seem forced, and just to fit the meter or rhyme, that feel like compromises of diction. Like the third line: ‘My tree, its branches sway” instead of something like “My tree’s bleak branches sway…” But the overall mood of darkness is effective, and the ending does pack a chilling punch, so the poem works to a degree. (32ºF)

    • C.B. Anderson

      It’s easy, Paul, to lose track of tense. I often have to go back and correct this inconsistency in my own poems. Person (1st, 2nd or 3rd) is another dimension in which it’s easy to get lost. If the mood of darkness rings your bell, then just go with that.


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