Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Movement Towards Yesterday


As in dream the mists drift in
obscure moonlight and the path
strewn with red wild flowers.
I reach out feel the bark
of a tree


The path was still there
though wind and flame
transformed. My feet
set on its familiar winding
know the way
though my eyes
are confused
more rock in view.

The once ancient tower
sentry of the forest
overlooking the desert
now cradled by stone.


Sleep is welcome
but it does not come.
Under a white moon
the wind blows hot
trees sway and moan.
The Santa Anas howl
the restless saint roams.

Sun rises over the mountains.
The dragon wakes
heaves its great chest
takes its first breath.

© 2011 Joanne Elliott

This year we lost The Poetry Cabin, our retreat in the mountains, to the bank. Back in Oct. 2007 we nearly lost it to fire, but it rose from the ashes better than before. The building is someone else’s now, but The Poetry Cabin lives online via Facebook and Twitter. Please join us there.

Santa Anas are what we call the hot winds off the desert that visit us in So Cal during the fall and winter.




  1. Joan, I am so sorry for that loss. It is a particularly disturbing loss, and something that has become commonplace to many of us.

    Your poem is haunting. Fire is the ultimate loss.

    Thank you for this beautiful poem.

    Lady Nyo

  2. What a shame to lose your cabin retreat to the bank and yes, so much lost to the fires this year too.
    Lovely prose.

  3. Interesting take on future, present and past...... I like the dragon breath representing the Santa Ana winds.. Sorry about the loss of your cabin..... If this poem is an indicator of what you can accomplish without it, then don't lose sleep over it Joanne, (like you alluded to in "Yesterday......")

  4. do like the last lines... mystery to your poem

  5. i love the step through time...and your descriptions are excellent...love the dragon as well...i am sorry for your loss and following along on twitter...smiles....

  6. Really worked all time variation into one, sucks on the cabin. Fire can be devestating and strike any where, such as the nature of the beast I guess.

  7. Joanne...it was me and my home not that long ago. I know the hurt, the pain, the sense of loss, and the absolute despair that rumbles and festers on the inside. A miracle happened for me, and I was able to get the dream sold before the banksters claimed it as their own...still doesn't change the fact I had to sell my dream, nor the bitterness even thinking about it brings. You're poetry cabin will continue to grow, to evolve, and as the universe spins, you will once again have sacred ground to help the words rise...did I just say all this publicly!? Sorry! The poem was a journey, as always, and as always, a beautifully penned trek indeed.

  8. Beautifully written. I am so sorry for your loss, so sad.

  9. Though physically, lost, may its wonder persevere forever, in one form or another. A beautiful if haunting work, winding through time and space in that mystical, uncertain manner. Bravo.

  10. First, I ache for your loss--it isn't about the building, it's about the soul, something banks don't have. Then, I want to say I really find this poem remarkable in mood and structure. It unfolds backwards, rolls forwards, and makes a totality of experience--the sleeplessness under the white moon I know too well, and the dragon of the sun--the winds also feel like an old enemy known so well they're almost family.Fine poem, Joanne.

  11. I am so sorry to hear of your loss and I am sure you will find another poetry cabin soon and make it your new home

  12. Very sorry to hear about your loss. Joy pretty much sums up my take as well- not the building at all-it's what's represented inside of you. Deeply sorry, as I know how circumstances such as this can really hurt. The poetry is very well written and has some very nice lines, the dragon waking is a great image. The early structure worked very well for me as well. Thanks for the read

  13. Awww! Some changes just don't feel like they should be, if they are part of the dream, but dreams are sometimes given a new window to see out of. I, too, love the dragon, like Fred does. Something about that takes me from a small place on the Earth to larger, deeper places within it.

  14. It is so hard to lose something that is so important....but it will forever live on in your heart! Beautiful poem.