i was so full of own song that i didn’t hear hers once//she trusted me &sang

highland sheep

highland sheep


highland wind howls–
a huge wounded bear
&purple//heather stre T c h  i  N g fragile limbs
on endless green& stone-rough houses
that errect– wombs with empty eyes
we drive a big mercedes with soft leather seats
which doesn’t fit
the color of the road/deeP

chucKholes buMp the street// wooly sheep with blackprint faces
rain pours
&a stripe of blue–

“that car smells strange” i say
we pull out on the left side,
pressing buttons to unlock the hood
it won’t open
sharp wind
i put on another coat

“you need help?”
“i used to work for them– mercedes, trucks though” he smiles
finds the lock,
brushes through the task bar,
it looks good
“probably remains of a dead animal on the hot engine”

the street climbs small&curvy
“don’t you think they’re getting wet?”
“nah, the wool fat keeps ’em dry”
“the place reminds me of the last james bond,
where he grew up–”

i feel full //and empty//weak
drawn in by the magic of her shades
they pull me in-
to story after story

“could you live here?”
&i see me sitting with the sheep,
a sheperd’s staff//book in hand//thick boots,
“it’s not romantic– life is rough up here”

to //the sileNce
falling// circles, tantalizing, in a weird dispute
with every fibre in me that shouts city
&her pink breath
smells of all i never knew


Mary has us writing to my sketches at dVerse today… pick one, write a poem and join us when the pub doors open at 3pm EST…

42 responses to “i was so full of own song that i didn’t hear hers once//she trusted me &sang

  1. rough land shapes many…i think of david out there and all he learned of poetry on the side of a hill tending the sheep…of course he probably fought off a few animals in his day too…nice hit on james bond…i can see it as i def enjoy the movie…the last lines are fav…the breath holding all you never knew…that is cool…smiles.

  2. Oh, I definitely could see the highlands in your poem, Claudia, as well as in your sketch! And, ah, I do remember the sheep. And good to hear that they don’t get wet, that their wool keeps them dry. As far as living there, well…perhaps it might be romantic to tourists, but yes I think it would be a hard life every day. And, oh, I really hope there was no dead animal on the engine. Ewwwww. I am so looking forward to seeing what poems are written to your art, Claudia!!

  3. I love how you have evoked the scenery and weather through your words and sketch. The constant rain was what I found hardest when I lived there. Honestly I do not think we ever had a rain free week. It would indeed be rough for me. I hope you enjoy the poems your art inspires. I love the prompt!

  4. We vacationed for over 20 years to a little cabin in the mountains, one year we met a lady from Chicago who had moved to the mountains. “I decided it was better to live here and vacation to the city than the other way around.”

    Your poem made me think of that conversation. Of course I still live in the city 🙂

  5. Again your words create a vivid experience for me..fairly certain that I couldn’t live with so much rain…but a lovely place to visit I would suppose.

  6. If it was easy thing to live out in the mountains, with herds of cattle, and flocks of sheep, and dead animals who only sought a bit of warmth on engine, the smells the freedoms–everyone would be out on the fahrm…and I can smell the smells, b/c I have experienced much, many, and most of them.

    www!!! you have, to color with words and paint, and have career which suits you so well….

  7. like the colors & lines your words are…so fresh, bright and vivid….”surrender
    to //the sileNce
    falling// circles, tantalizing, in a weird dispute
    with every fibre in me that shouts city
    &her pink breath
    smells of all i never knew”…this shines with brilliance and honesty…


  8. I have not been to the highlands since I was a kid, but blooming heather is the right time to go there. Oh and sheep, yes they can handle rain. To live in a place like that would be nice.. But city would call I guess….

  9. Yep, that kind of life is romantic only to those who don’t have to live it day in, day out… I like this prompt – I’ve always enjoyed your paintings, Claudia! Look foreward to writing something later on today!

  10. I like the smell of unknown life…it’s could be intriguing without knowing what is behind it….side note: it’s strangely reminded me the smell in my car I couldn’t locate where coming from….until lifted the cover in the trunk – it was cracked watermelon …time ago….o, my…I forgot busy with my life…

  11. What a lovely poem Claudia. I love the sketch and how your words enhance it with even more vivid pictures and feelings. The end of this is superb.
    I like this prompt. Hope I get to write something for you. (Life is interfering a little with my writing lately.) Can’t wait to read what other poets create.

  12. I love the ending…so romantic to think about but I am a city gal so I know I will not survive there ~ I admire the line break here:

    they pull me in-
    to story after story

  13. You really hooked me with /wombs with empty eyes/ I almost chose this image, but instead went with one of your hubs working on his lap top. I guess “midges” are the Scottish mosquitos?

  14. Hey Claudia – am just back from highlands – and it has been one of my favourite places – always. When I first went there, I wrote a piece standing on the hills – it reminded me of the same.

    Was it easy for you to explore the real story behind the sketch or you came up with a new one to go with the image?

  15. I looked and looked for the bear!–but only see the heather stretching. i can imagine such a car on those narrow roads! stopped in a herd of sheep. Here they stay neatly on the hills and roadd sides, warm as wool. We who want to sit on the hills to write and sketch learn from the sheep to be warm, to walk betwenn the droppings, and not to expect much. maybe things that we didn’t hear would come flooding in?

  16. I love this and as you know for the longest time I have loved your sketches. I think they are super cool and I am so happy that you are loving all your creativity.

  17. I feel like I’m in the back seat with you – this is lovely and I love the sly humor. This is one of my favorite sketches of yours… you are very talented

  18. I would enjoy seeing heather in bloom I can only imagine the beauty and smell. It might be inspiring to get a new view once in a while. Thank you for taking me with you to the highlands.

  19. So cool to visit a different reality and imagine oneself in it……..I love your sketch, and the purple…..and of course I would always pick the small hard life on the land to the city…..but that’s just me…….I would have made a great lighthouse keeper. Drat, why did I not do that decades ago????? Now they have automated them – which is just not the same at all. No mystique – and no human eyes and ears for shipwrecks.

  20. I enjoyed this one Claudia. I agree the life among sheep is not easy. I once very naively asked a farmer how he kept count of his sheep as he had huge flocks. His dry reply was: ‘I count their legs and divide by four.’

  21. That silence at the end…as if you not wanting to say out loud what you are thinking… No, I couldn’t live out there in that harshness but I admire those that choose to.

  22. Country view always make me pleasant………it regains energy to write a lovely song,…………. Beautiful…………very inspiring

  23. Such a vivid scene you have painted in water colors and words. I hope some day you make a chapbook that is titled something akin to Water Colors & Words.

    I love how you brought in the last James Bond but I especially love how you let the poem rest in breath.
    “with every fibre in me that shouts city
    &her pink breath
    smells of all i never knew”


  24. Yes you remind me of a city person. Me too. Nice picture. Mountain top vacations are for me. Anytime of year. Recharge my energy. I like going out exploring small country roads. Nice read.

  25. I can see and feel why you would want to live there. I can picture you there, sketchbook in hand…. ah, but there are so many places for you still left to sketch…somehow I feel like you’d fit in anywhere…blending into the background observing and sketching…

  26. Claudia, our muse. As always I’m smitten with your writing. First, nice choice of watercolors. 😉 I’m enjoying hearing more of this piece’s story; and stories having nothing to do with the piece per se. It makes an already vivid watercolor really spring to life. The ending verse really got me:

    to //the sileNce
    falling// circles, tantalizing, in a weird dispute
    with every fibre in me that shouts city
    &her pink breath
    smells of all i never knew

    and it leave me wanting to visit there one day.