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Poetry Magnum Opus

Such Country As the Lovers Own

David W. Parsley

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David W. Parsley


Such country as the lovers choose is no
tract for any but the saintly: there, a wired
fence goes down at the end of a graveled
road – each path thereafter, deer track,
bear trail, boundaries set by the stone
and weed as the reader discerns, butte-sites where
the lovers come down in silence, smallness of world
held pendulum-like between them. Such talk
as stills there is not lost, but given place:
a gap they could close with lips that kiss. Or pray.

In such country as the lovers own, skies
hover in the way of storms, clouds
the solitary fowl cross in search
of what must fall there: whether in parks or groves,
secret dens – the small acts born of privacy.
The storm begins and ends here: car's quiet throb
in the dark; breath of cheek reading shoulder; touch"
of her tranquil breast against his side; cold
flakes touching the hood like tips of arrows.
Every word he spends on that cheek, true.

L. Paul Roberts Poetry Foundation winner, 1981

© David W. Parsley, 2011

Parsley Poetry Collection

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Hello Dave.

I enjoyed your theme, tactful use of language and enjambment, which suits well this more expansive verse form. A pleasant surprise. Benjamin

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David W. Parsley

Tinker, Benjamin, I am gratified that you have understood this piece, noting treatment of the form and how it means.


Tink, I can't let the Nightingale comment pass without comment: such an eloquent tribute. Thank you.


~ ...fled is that music... ~


- Dave

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Larsen M. Callirhoe

dave, a masterpiece by you. i follow keats i pay amenity by writing many letters to the masses of people i communicate with via the internet thru email which gives me the same magnitude of how i originate many of my poems thru his philosophy of writing letters to those in his circle which gave him ideas for his poetry. i pay you great homage by saying this work of yours reminds me of his poem, "Ode to a Nightingale". it flows in the same ominence.




i rarely talk about poetry legends. i love to read up and coming poets. some may one day become worldd famous. i would love if i inspired only one ;line in there hundreds if not thousands of works released to the public. if not at least i know i read something magical from another human soul. this is such a work. i have read it a dozen times. all i can say is wow. you took my breat away from me.



Larsen M. Callirhoe

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A contemporary application of a classic form. This one makes me think of the North American west, say, from Colorado to Montana to Canada's prairie provinces. I very muck like your own particular brand of solitude expressed especially well in the second verse.



Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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David W. Parsley

Tony, Eclipse, thanks for the words of encouragement and admiration. Tony, you got it right, my envisioned setting is based on any of a number of places in the American west. I am glad you connected with the concept of a shared solitude between lovers.


Speaking of encouraging words - Victor, you returned the favor of this ode by taking my breath, too. How gratifying to know that this work struck such a resonant chord in "another human soul." I hope that other works to come do not disappoint too much.


- Dave


P.S. Tink, I still savor that Nightingale tribute, too...

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