Mistress

My lover leaves her name outside my door
when evening gives us leisure to explore
the sounds between the silences, the stark
divide, the interplay of light and dark,
each night more daring than the night before.

And when I cannot tally anymore
the whispered count, the reckoning of scores,
I catalogue each kiss and every mark
my lover leaves.

At last she fetches wine and bids me pour;
she offers me her cup: one sip, no more.
And having kindled flame from love’s last spark
before the jaded warning of the lark,
my sheets like moonlight cast upon the floor,
my lover leaves.


I’m catching up on unfinished projects. This is a rondeau, which was the subject of yeah write’s May 2016 poetry slam.

11 responses to “Mistress

  1. This is really beautiful. I love the vivid imagery and the smooth meter and rhyme, and the sensual language really enhanced the subject of your poem. I wasn’t sure exactly what you meant by “the stark divide,” although it did fit in with the general theme of contrast. That’s my only nitpick though – overall, I thought you nailed the form, and I really enjoyed this poem!

  2. I’m not going to lie, I have a hard time reading poetry like this sometimes when I know the line breaks are there for a reason (because it’s a rondeau) but it doesn’t make sense in my head. So, when that happens I just read it over a few times aloud, each sentence by itself regardless of where it is placed, and it was after I did that that I realized how amazing this poem is, and what a great little (sad) story it is, the story of an affair.

    You painted a little picture of a dude totally obsessed. Nice 😉

  3. I’ve always loved when the flow of a poem (not necessarily the rhyme or meter) suits the images that play out in my head. In this case: a dance. Something about the way you wrote it, the flow of the words and images and even just the words themselves, beautifully reflect the dance lovers engage in. Really gorgeous.

  4. “My sheets like moonlight cast upon the floor.” Man, I wish I’d written that.

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