September 12, 2015 § 8 Comments


an empty bed –







attic –

my longing stretches



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§ 8 Responses to want

  • There is a sensitive yet powerful sense of longing to this. It hints at an inner loneliness that is yearning to be filled. Fine writing, Rachael.

  • tabbyrenelle says:

    Oh I love this poem. It reminds me of the tiny novel Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu, which is like the first vampire story (I think written before Dracula… maybe I have my memory-facts correct on this…) because of the bat in the attic and the longing… and the white innocence… in your words. It transported me.

    halloween is coming!

    Beautiful photo too. πŸ™‚

    • Rachael Charmley says:

      Ah. Thank you. I think Carmilla was written before Stoker’s scary story, but I haven’t read it – except perhaps when I was small…
      Taking the reader to another place – that’s about the finest accolade a writer can get πŸ™‚

      • tabbyrenelle says:

        Your poem actually stuck with me last night, Rachael, as I reflected on it some more… I was thinking it doesn’t have to be a vampire in the attic… it could be like the expression “bats in the bell-fry” which is like losing ones mind in the wanting/longing. But it’s just the flap of a bat… in the attic (so not crazy, just feeling like it could go that way in the wanting of the empty bed ) and then the white of the photo feels more like emptiness and loneliness and not innocence in this “take” on the poem.

        I’m not trying to figure it out, but rather loving how many ways it can make me feel as a reader.

        I have a purely “zen” reading on it too, where the person hears an actual bat and wants to be able to sleep and so has gotten out of bed. πŸ™‚

        So most excellent poem! I do like the way my first reaction made me feel. But when my later reflections happened spontaneously without even looking at your poem, I realized it’s quite a strong poem to stay with me, running through my mind, and expanding…

        What an exciting writer, to come across. Glad you’re doing it! πŸ™‚

        • Rachael Charmley says:

          It’s a great compliment to a writer when a reader can stay inside the world of words and images long after they have finished reading the piece. It’s a rare experience for me.
          One of the great things about haiku is its capacity for ambiguity and alluding to those spaces ‘in between’. This I like because I can simply write what comes into my head without conscious intention! A bit Zen, I suppose πŸ™‚ (or utter bullshit :-))

          • tabbyrenelle says:

            No, you’re not bullshit. You’re zen. You’re a fluid writer in touch with nature and the poems have emotional weight. I promise I wouldn’t give you a bullshit critique. I’m guilty of being too hard on writers without being asked for critique! And I’m trying hard not to do that anymore.

            I think this is a wonderful way of saying what you do: “One of the great things about haiku is its capacity for ambiguity and alluding to those spaces β€˜in between’.” So keep doing it!!!! πŸ™‚

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You are currently reading want at Changing Skin: modern haiku and other stories.


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