Finding Direction ~ puente

Finding Direction

How I held your counsel dear,
missed now in your absence –
the talks we shared,
the lessons learned.
Long years have passed
since we last spoke,
each trial faced reminding me
of the advice you gave,
each time leading to
that never ending question.

~ Which is the right course to take? ~

No words I might provide
would hold the answer you seek.
It is not mine to give,
but yours to divine.
Look not to my past,
but to your present.
There is hope and despair
in all that you face.
Know the difference,
and all will be revealed.

The prompt for MTB: O Apostrophe! from Amaya at dVerse ~ Poets Pub is to use the poetic apostrophe – not as in possession, but in reference to something absent. When poets direct speech to an abstract concept or a person who is not physically present, they’re writing apostrophe poetry. Historically, poets often began their address to the absent party with the interjection “O.”

The is my first attempt at writing a puente. Its form seems perfect for my purposes, as this poem contains a response to the opening stanza.

The puente has three stanzas with the first and third having an equal number of lines and the middle stanza having only one line which acts as a bridge (puente) between the first and third stanza. The first and third stanzas convey a related but different element or feeling, as though they were two adjacent territories. The number of lines in the first and third stanza is the writer’s choice as is the choice of whether to write it in free verse or rhyme.

The center line is delineated by a tilde (~) and has ‘double duty’. It functions as the ending for the last line of the first stanza AND as the beginning for the first line of the third stanza. It shares ownership with these two lines and consequently bridges the first and third stanzas, essentially resulting in two that overlap.

18 thoughts on “Finding Direction ~ puente

    • Thank you. 🙂 I’ve been watching others use the form for a while, and admired the poems.
      I guess I just needed the right frame of mind to try it myself. My father’s death was in early December, back in the early nineties, and he’s been on my mind lately. I actually wrote the second stanza before the first.

      Liked by 1 person

      • With death of someone significant, the messages keep coming, reshaping, becoming more relevant. I’m thinking back to my mother’s death in 1990 and her sister’s death month before last … for my aunt, I’m caught in the angst of initially losing my mother … this time I recognize raw grief for what it is. My mother would have loved your poem, would have handed me a copy saying “When you’re ready, sit with this.”

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Pingback: Green Jays Stage – stepsandpauses

    Your second speaker is so wise about discerning between hope and despair, as they can actually, contrary to what we might think, be so similar when looked upon with a lazy eye. I also really like this form, puente, and it did work so well with both challenges to the prompt. Thanks, Ken


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