16 September 2015


 Pandora trying to close the box, By F.S. Church (19th cenury)

Save Hope from those who say she lies
that she’s a tramp with lovely eyes,
a siren guiding us to die
while we work hard just to survive.

But Hope would keep our staggered hearts
alive to pump the blood to parts
requiring drink and food and arts
to stir us up to nurse the earth.

And Hope is delicate, you know,
more like to tremble at harsh blows,
more like to hide from needy beaus
than break us on hard rocks in snow.

When we left Hope near dead, alone,
and loosed evil upon our home—
poor Hope, a lonely child, still groaned
to think we soon would be dethroned.

No, Hope’s no tramp, no lying thief.
Her eyes are wide with disbelief
we waited long to bring relief.
We drown ourselves upon the reef.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast


X said...

Ha. But I like Hope as the tramp, visiting everyone indiscriminately.
But I hear you, when you lose hope, you lose life. I think that those that
have sold hope like a commodity have tarnished it a bit. And that we
put so much hope in people and it is not hope that hurts us
it is the people.

Mary said...

This poem has a bit of pessimism to it. It seems to me to imply that we are waiting and waiting for a Hope that may or may not arrive. Seems symbolic of so much in the world today. I do hope that Hope can be saved.....and so can we!

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Hmmm, that last line reminds me of the refugee crisis. This is a haunting piece with the delicacy of a song, achieved partly through the form, yet full of hard realism too.

Old Egg said...

Is hope just a foolish weakness that would be better turned to swift retaliatory action? Both man and the natural world have that uncanny knack for survival, thank heavens for that. Hope may be delicate but determination is very strong and I think they go hand in hand.

Jae Rose said...

This is indeed a song - one of both longing and knowing...i think hope will stay..se is strong and feisty...heaven knows she is trying hard to close Pandora's box! A beautiful poem..clever..meaningful and in some way a little wry too!

Sumana Roy said...

The last two lines do question Hope...however Hope always helps bear the pain at least and gives strength...love the rhythm and the flow....

Anonymous said...

The poem works so well with that image!

Sanaa Rizvi said...

And Hope is delicate, you know,
more like to tremble at harsh blows,

I absolutely adore this lines... and resonate so much with them.. indeed hope is delicate and trembles when harsh words are spoken. Excellent write :D

Lots of love,

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I can see Hope's expression of disbelief, and I share it, LOL. I adore "And Hope is delicate, you know."

Purba chakraborty said...

Hope makes the difficult times bearable, yet there are many who says that hope is a deception. Such true lines. A wonderful poem indeed.

annell4 said...

Wow, WOw, WOW!!!

Unknown said...

I wonder if one of the Sirens name was Hope. I love the symbolism and Pandora hmm you have woven quite a concerto for us Susan.

Magaly Guerrero said...

Hope can grow into such a force--and we with her--if we nurture, protect her, and belief in her power.

claireylove said...

I guess Hope's a good girl with a bad reputation. Let's stomp on those rumours and let Hope be seen for all she really is. Great work!

Myrna R. said...

I love this, the way Hope can't believe how we ignore her, downgrade her. But with some of us, she'll never be homeless.

Cressida de Nova said...

Without Hope there is no point.Pandora and Cassandra are not in her league.

Maude Lynn said...

Well done, Susan! I love this.

Gen Giggles said...

I agree with X that hope visits us all with discrimination is a fascinating idea.

Scarlet said...

I specially love this part:

And Hope is delicate, you know,
more like to tremble at harsh blows,
more like to hide from needy beaus
than break us on hard rocks in snow.

Good one Susan ~ Grace

Anonymous said...

Hope keeps us alive... sometimes the only thing that does. Lovely work, Susan

De Jackson said...

Lovely rhyme here.

kaykuala said...

We drown ourselves upon the reef.

Hope has so much to give. Keeping hope alive is to provide oneself a life-line. But we blew it dashed on the reefs!


Aditi said...

Oh, hope is delicate. And we need it, to keep going in life! Beautiful! :)

Intelliblog said...

A good poem, Susan, but it seems to somehow make of hope a smaller thing that it actually is, I think. Perhaps that is why hope is so precious - because it is fragile and delicate, but immortal...