Too much morning light
can erase the purple and pink-
gray clouds layered above
the hills like cotton ribbons
laid out for an Ozark cotillion.

Leaving, her crunching gravel
dust yellow primrose,
chase the last screech owl
from his nocturnal hunt.

Crow calls break the silence
Monet colors mute and mix
with backwash brush strokes
of too much water
A good sunrise is hard to hold
like tail lights over the last hill.

13 Responses to Watercolor

  1. johemmant says:

    This has many lovely images, Scot. I particularly enjoyed the final stanza.

  2. Scot says:

    Yeah, that tends to be the strongest part. This is in the process of revising–already eliminated the first few words and may need to flesh out the lover leaving bit??

  3. Nochipa says:


    I also love the final stanza. The tail light image is wonderful. It is the kind that stays in a reader’s mind.


  4. gingatao! says:

    Yes that definitely works well, a departure. The whole poem is rich and beautiful, full of colour and images. The middle stanza is a little difficult but maybe deliberately so. I will follow the progress of this poem with great interest. Sometimes the process is as revealing as the product.

  5. Scot says:

    Thanks–that leaves the middle stanza–it needs some work as it is where she leaves with the gravel dust covering the native flower. The sound of it coupled with the impending day light sends the owl for cover. Needs some fixin’

  6. Scot says:

    the middle is somewhat difficult as leaving someone usually is, but that connection was accident as it is the weaker one. Thnaks for the input–I will work on it some.

  7. Narnie says:

    You have three sounds in the middle here – crunch, chase (which in itself creates beating wings), screech and they add to the fleeting resentment. This means that by the time you read on and the sunrises, there is an acceptance moving in rather than it being all present. Therefore, I believe this poem is superior because it flows through a change of emotion and that highlights the change of the hours as it is read. There is one point though where my mind refuses to accept your comma (oh it does that, my mind, has a … uhmmmm… mind of its own) and that is here:

    Leaving, her crunching gravel

    Now, one could suppose that my mind is only doing this because I’m a woman and feel more romance the other way around but to me, my mind, it reads

    Leaving her, crunching gravel

    which of course would completely change the character you are originating this from but to me it feels more dramatic.

    Blimey… and there’s me who shivers when forced to critique and I did this one willingly 🙂

  8. Scot says:

    Is it better to have said
    her crunching gravel
    (on a different line–does that make it easier?
    or do you prefer the male leaving?
    I appreciate your thoughts on this–you have good insight and perspective.

  9. Narnie says:

    I think that the point is, to crunch gravel you’re thinking boots… and I suppose because of the overall romanticism of this piece, I imagine blokes boots crunching. Perhaps a woman would not crunch? I’ll think on…

  10. Scot says:

    Oh, the crunching gravel is her in the car leaving down the gravel road…at least in my mind. The gravel dust is what is on the primrose…

    as the car drives away on a gravel road in the country–you can hear it until the sound fades away—-hence the tail lights at the end.

  11. Narnie says:

    Maybe leave out the ‘her’ all together then? I’ve read it aloud without the her and then the reader can interpret as they wish? I love ambiguity in things I read as I firmly go by the view that the reader/viewer is the final stroke of any picture – but I promise you, it works either which way and everyway… it’s just that each is different, not better.

  12. johemmant says:

    Well as you gave me advice the other day, which I mostly took, laughing, I will butt in and say that I don’t have a problem with the beginning of that stanza, I saw the car, heard her driving away with the screech of the owl foretold beautifully, for me it’s the chase that makes it difficult to process….so I would write chasing…. as in the sounds of the car are chasing the owl from his hunt. Just another perspective….apologies for barging in.

  13. Scot says:

    Thanks Jo–you are right about the sound of the car chasing—you are always welcomed to “barge in”

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