Dark portent, or: Timeworn bottle

A quadrille (44 words)

Torn up streets; thick weeds; heavy smell of musk;
Long covered for ages by toxic vapor.
Survivors? They're living in benighted dusk;
None alive have known a sheet of paper.

A child in deerskins spurts towards shaman’s tent,
Clutching timeworn bottle, fearing dark portent.

d’Verse Quadrille #148

The above poem is my take on today’s d’Verse’s Quadrille challenge. The Quadrille is simply a poem of 44 words (excluding the title), and it can take any form. This week’s challenge was to use the word “paper” in a Quadrille.

I adapted this piece from an Ottava Rima that I wrote just last week because that poem happened to contain the word “paper”. The original Ottava Rima goes as follows:

Of lofty ~ high-rises ~ remain only husks ~
Naught ~ left of even ~ the best-built skyscraper ~
On broken streets ~ thick weeds ~ heavy smell of musk ~
Once barren ~ due to ~ deathly ~ magic vapor ~
Survivors ~ now live ~ in benighted dusk ~
None alive ~ have known ~ any sheet of paper ~
A child ~ in deerskin ~ spurts towards shaman’s tent ~ 
Clutching timeworn bottle ~ fearing dark portent ~

Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

58 thoughts on “Dark portent, or: Timeworn bottle”

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