A Mountainous Shadow of Doubt - a Poetic Response to Bill Holland's Challenge



Having previously submitted a story to Bill's challenge, I'd no intention of submitting another entry. However, I was unable to go to sleep until I'd written this poem which thrust itself on me. After all, poetry is my main hallmark. So please accept this as it is intended, which is for inspiration to arise from doubt or gloom if/when it besets us.




A mountainous shadow of doubt, ~

They crouch and writhe

Beneath surrounding mount

'Midst consuming, soulful gnawing

Evermore Abiding.




Hid in abandoned, crumbling walls,







Traveling on rejected rails





To graveyards of despairing calls

'Midst moans and wails

Along its trails.



Embrace the hope within.

Escape the bonds of fear.


Cast off, cast down the chains

Which now enfold your souls.

Take hold of hope abounding.

Rise up! Oh doubters, arise!

You need not hide your sighs.

Cast off, cast down the lies

Which overtook your lives.


Rise up with sun in view.


No more a mountainous shadow,

No more circuitous traversing.

No more those cavernous graves.

No more oppressive despair dispersing ~


With glorious sunshine everywhere,

Peace is ling'ring there.
















The poem by ~ © Nellieanna Hay,

written September 3, 2016.


ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. This poetic material is protected under International and Federal Copyright Laws and Treaties. Any unauthorized reprint or use of this material is prohibited. No part may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission of Nellieanna H. Hay.


© 2016 Nellieanna Hay

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Comments 36 comments

snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 3 months ago from Canada

Nellieanna, I am pleased to see your Mountainous ray of light flooding my screen. And thanks for the heads up (literally) about Bill's latest writing challenge.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 3 months ago from Queensland Australia

This is poetry at it's best Nellieanna. When the inspiration hits you just can't ignore it. Excellent song choice to accompany it as well and the photos are very effective in black and white.


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 3 months ago from london

Extremely beautiful and immaculately written. Exquisite piece, Dear Nellieanna. Actually, if I remember rightly, when I entered both Bill's and Ann's challenge, I did poem and prose. Good on you! Love and Light.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Snakes! What a pleasure to see you! How are you and how have you been?

I'm so glad you like my Mountainous offering.

I got to bed quite late (should say 'early', since the light was coming up!) It was first of all due to having been compiling the links list of the other challenge entries I know of to add to my first challenge post. It sort of reminded me of the list for that wonderful series on aging which 'arb' organized and had 16 of us participating, several years ago. So this was gratifying to find that the HP 'link' capsule still aids in making a live-link list of hubs.

Then, as I was going to actually lie down, this poem idea overtook me. I sat down in the bedroom and composed it on my iPhone. I did lie down then, but not for very long. I wanted to get up and on to making the hub. I've been so inactive in HP for awhile, it was interesting to be in the familiar process once - or twice - again!

Are you writing? I haven't received any notices of your hubs in awhile. This challenge seems to have stirred a number of us to get up and write hubs!

Thanks again, my dear.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

ellieanna 1 minute ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Manatita! Thank you for your approval! I didn't recall you'd submit both prose and poetic entries in earlier challenges. It's been so long since I've participated in a challenge. I was delighted to get inspiration(s) for this one!

I diligently scrolled all your more recent hubs on your profile page, looking for an entry in this current "Mountain" based writing challenge of Bill's, to no avail. I knew you'd been traveling, though. But the deadline to submit an entry is not till Sept. 10th. Perhaps you'll still find time and inspiration to write one! I know it would be great.

In case you might need it, here is Bill's link explaining the challenge:

http://hubpages.com/literature/A-Writing-Challenge...


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 3 months ago from london

Thank you, my Love. I know... I know... I myself don't know what I'll do. But Bill is a friend and it's tempting... Watch this space.

P.S. I gave two wonderful renditions to the Woman on The Mountain by Bill, both prose and Poetry.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

I will watch, Manatita. No pressure, though.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Jodah! Thank you so much for your lovely compliment!

So true that an inspiration is urgent! It makes the very time to locate a place to start writing it down to seem more like eons than moments!

An intrinsic part of the inspiration was visualizing the four photos as I wrote in my mind and then adjusting each of them to fit the theme of the parts of the poem. The music, as well, seemed to virtually present itself to me and to flow right in so well.

It was a real pleasure to write and present it!


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 3 months ago from london

http://hubpages.com/literature/The-Woman-on-the-Mo... the other one is next to it. 24 and 29, I believe.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Manatita, I'm unable to open the link. It says it is not published now. I scrolled on back in your hubs, looking for it and was unable to find it. I also just asked for hubs with The Woman on the Mountain in the title and found others by other people but not yours.

Surely it's just a glitch in the link or something. I'd love to see it!


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 3 months ago from southern USA

Dear Nellieanna,

Yes, poetry is certainly your main hallmark! What brilliantly dramatic poetry. I love how you changed the prompt photos to black and white to add even more drama and then when hope enters they are in color.

You certainly have not lost your gift of writing poetry. I so enjoyed this fine piece here.

You are too kind to link my response to a challenge of three years ago issued by Bill back then. He required photo prompts in that challenge as well. I do plan to publish one to Bill's latest challenge too.

My two precious grandsons are up for the weekend, and sweet little Charlie is only 9 months old and attempting to walk, so we are having to keep an eye on him at all times. They are fast asleep now.

You are a treasure.

Peace and blessings


cam8510 profile image

cam8510 3 months ago from Columbus, Georgia until the end of November 2016.

Nellieanna, Loved your poem, and I'm headed off to read your other entry. In this one, I am most impressed with the lines which represent the prompt photos. This, to me, was outstanding...

"Hid in abandoned, crumbling walls,Traveling on rejected rails

To graveyards of despairing calls

'Midst moans and wails

Along its trails.

Well done.


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 3 months ago from Jeffersonville PA

Listening to Tim Janis...so lovely, dear Nellieanna...the more I read of this exquisite poetry, I was indeed left with a feeling of hope.

I honestly cannot decide whether I enjoy your poetry or stories better - thank goodness I am not Bill - the decision seems daunting to me.

Love this and love you, Maria


billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 months ago from Olympia, WA

I finally made it after taking a day off from the computer and what a wonderful response to the challenge. Thank you my friend. I will put it in the file and revisit it on the 10th....and thank you for listing the others at the end. Very helpful.


Shalini Kagal profile image

Shalini Kagal 3 months ago from India

Loved the poem and I'm so glad you decided to write a second one for the challenge. Beautiful verse as always Nellieanna!


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Oh, dear, dear Theresa. Thank you for your kind comments. I so appreciate your notice and enjoying the more subtle parts of the presentation. Takes one to know one, right? You are a talented poet, writer and hub-creator. I love to read yours.

Yes, writing poetry is so much an intrinsic part of who I am that it’s impossible for me to not think of it as being ‘me’, the poetic, creative. sensitive. At the same time, the other part of me is no less ’me’, being the prosaic, analytical and practical. It’s how one responds to the various situations one meets, at least that is my experience. If one is balanced within oneself, then one responds according to what is honestly and actually involved. Examples: I respond to matters of the heart and to the beauties of nature and to the human condition with its sweetness and tragedy with sensitive creativity. But I do my housework, manage my business affairs and my own health and wellness, prepare my taxes and resolve practical issues with clear-headed, analytical practicality. haha. The fact is that most real-life situations one encounters involve and stimulate the balance of one’s sensitivity and practicality. Thankfully, that’s how it works if balance is ‘in there’ working well. It helps to be aware of the two hemispheres of one’s being and to be OK with that. I find that there is no self-delusion in either the creative or the practical responses and hope there is no dishonestly in what it shows others, though a lot of that depends on themselves. We’re all in process of ‘fully becoming’. It’s our assignment here in this life, I think.

I guess I could say that the poetry on this hub and the list of links to others’ hubs is a combination of my poetic and my practical! I’ve found I do best and am happiest doing things which use both. Of course, my poetry arose spontaneously from mind and heart and had to be written down to capture it and to satisfy my inner muse and conviction. Organizing the hub link list is as a real and practical help to me, as well to share that access for others. It made me happy to provide it for all of us. I hope I haven’t missed any of the challenge works which have been submitted. If I have, I hope to learn of them so they can be included. But the time for the challenge to close is fast approaching!

I hope you do respond to Bill’s current challenge, Theresa! Your take on it would be so enjoyable! Isn’t it wonderful to share all the various responses?

About my still writing poetry, I write almost constantly, both poetry and prose, though seldom fictional prose. My poetry continues to arise from my deepest muse while my prose is usually about serious subjects which are matters of conviction and opinion for which I have pretty strong opinions. I think non-stop (except when sleeping) and it’s usually expressed in one or the other, poetry or prose.

The fact is that I have so much poetry (thousands of poems) written in my long life, largely in fading long-hand writing on paper beginning to yellow. So I’m trying to transcribe it to the computer, and am more inclined to do it to share online, because mere “tooly’ projects are tiresome, especially related to poetry! Anyway, that’s why much I’ve published has dates from earlier time. I still enjoy writing poetry in longhand, but it’s usually being transcribed to computer immediately.

This poem shared here was written on my iPhone’s ’Notes” app which I had in my hand on my way to bed! Then it was sent by the cloud to my computer! I’ve written quite a bit on my iPhone Notes app, often when I woke up with an inspiration and it was the nearest way to preserve it while it was “there”! haha. I keep blank books nearby to jot down poems in long-hand when I’m up and near them. For years I felt strongly that my poetry lost a lot when transcribed to typed form. I still kinda think so. The arrangements on the page ‘said’ a lot non-verbally.

I am less prolific these days than I’ve been at times of my life when other ways to communicate my thoughts and heart were much less available. I wrote many poems every day while I was doing my routine tasks in relative isolation. I’d run to my notebook and jot them down, along with the date, and then back to work till another one came to me. It was like a diary. In the present, no day passes without my writing a lot, both poetry and prose. Probably part of why of my Carpal Tunnel Syndrome! haha. I give God thanks all the time that I can still type and write out what I think & can think clearly. Maybe it’s a way keep being able to think clearly. I haven’t tested it. (wink) How do people live without being able to write and think? I pray for them & that I won’t need to test it to find out first-hand!


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Chris, what happens in Nov., 2016 relating to your being in Columbus, Georgia? I’m intrigued!

Thank you for reading this effort of mine, and investigating the other one I’ve submitted to Bill’s challenge! I appreciate your noticing and approving of my relating the words of the poem to Bill’s prompt photos. Thank you for being sensitive and aware of that!

My first thought prior to considering fleshing it out in was the familiar phrase which popped in my head as I was preparing for bed, “Shadow of a Doubt”, not to use in a response to his writing challenge. I was wondering what I might do with it when that thought of a response to the challenge took shape. Then it was mostly those photos, so full of suggestion & inspiration which propelled it and yielded themselves to the poem that ensued. The poem literally formed itself around the photos being vividly pictured in my mind. I was not near my computer to see them. They were imprinted on my mind from having written the little story around them. It was a contrast to a reverse process of writing and then trying to relate the photos to the words. In fact, without those pictures in my head, this poem wouldn’t have materialized, nor the story. I gladly admit that, in both, the photos inspired and led my inspirations. They were surely quite thoughtfully & deliberately chosen by Bill for their potency and wide applicability, as the variety of the responses proves. That’s part of his genius!


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Oh, Maria dear! Isn’t Tim Janis’ beautiful music, “Hope” wonderful? Here’s how it’s described on the video: “Music Of Hope - The New York Philharmonic conducted by Kurt Masur. Composed by Tim Janis. - We all hope. It's what keeps us alive -” It’s easy to see why I chose it as the musical message expressing the main message of my poem! Thank you for sharing my enjoyment of it.

I’m glad the the hope message communicated to you. I realized that the beginning did not declare hope, but my message is that hope and joy do not exist in a vacuum, but arise from real life trials and even from deep depressions and catastrophes, if hope and faith are to be strong, real and abiding.

Well, thank you so much for enjoying both my poem and my story for this challenge. I agree that Bill’s challenge will be to deciding on which of the many outstanding submissions to choose as the ‘winner’ & that would not be something I’d want to have to confront! haha. I’m sure that he will apply his high standards of writing to the decision, though, and that we can all benefit from it. He is a master teacher.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Ah, speak of him! Hello, Bill! Thank you for visiting and liking my submission to the challenge. It has been a personal small odyssey for me, responding and doing it. Thanks for making and designing the challenge. I'd say it's working well!

It was my pleasure to compile the live-links listing.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Hello, dear Shalini. Thank you for visiting here and letting me know what you think about it! Glad you love it

I’m looking forward to reading your submission to the challenge. I’ve scrolled over it, but saw it needs more careful reading. In fact, I need to set aside some quiet time to read all the great submitted entries to fully appreciate them!

It’s exciting that so many of us have responded. Hope it results in more participation and activity on HP. The camaraderie here is unlike any other 'social media' available. We really support each other and withhold mean remarks. Even criticism is given as real help and differences of opinion are share graciously. At least, that's always been my HP experience! It's so refreshing.

Hugs. ~ Nellieanna


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 3 months ago from Riga, Latvia

Nell this was awesome you just blew me away. Loved, loved this.


Venkatachari M profile image

Venkatachari M 3 months ago from Hyderabad, India

Awesome poetry. Very inspiring and insightful. The Hope video is excellent. It spreads a wonderful message. Thanks, Nellieanna, for sharing these wonderful thoughts.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Sweet Rasma ~ Thank you! I’m so honored that you felt such a deeply positive response! Hugs.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Venkatachari ~ It’s deeply satisfying to me that you felt the message of the poetry, - also that you share my effects in response to the Hope video.

Hope is an upifting message we cannot be reminded of too much. I very much appreciate your sharing your response to this with me. Thank you!


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 3 months ago from South Africa

Absolutely profound and thought-provoking. Those shadows of doubt prevent us from appreciating the beauty in our lives.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 months ago from Central Florida

Nellieanna, I'm so glad you came back with a poetic entry to Bill's challenge. Your poetry is always inspiring and reflective. It's what you do best and comes from the heart.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Martie - you do me honor with your engaged comment. You really delved iton my hub and saw its essence.

Yes, shadows of doubt (as well as other shadowy thoughts and feelings) can obliterate the beauty and joy at our disposal if we're not careful! And it’s surely no accident that the perception of the shadows originate in ourselves, rather than in the external input where the beauty abides!

I’m working on a hub, - almost ready to publish, - with much food for thought, I think. Its format is a mix of prose and verse, another one which just overtook me and I could hardly let go of it to eat a little for supper (at 9PM) and to go to bed, which I finally arbitrarily did at 5:15 AM this morning. Was intending to give it a final edit and finishing touch as soon as I got up (at 7:35 AM). Have been up and going ever since, but haven’t gotten to the hub. The day has been usurped by tiresome unavoidable details of living! Now my evening meal is still a distant thought and it’s after 7PM.

I can’t describe how it works, this odd scheduling - more so as the years whiz by. I’ve always had OCS and stayed at a project without pausing for normal stuff, but now I’m more slowed down by it after doing so!! It’s funny, though. While it’s in progress, I’m oblivious to time, hunger and weariness - at the time!


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Hello, dear Shauna! I’m relieved to hear that my double-dipping in Bill’s challenge is acceptable! I really didn’t set out or intend to do it, but what can you do when the muse just pokes you into action? haha. Bill’s pictures were so effective, I think I could write several responses, all different. But doing the poetic one satisfied the full-circle enough to let it rest. Most of my stuff arises from within but, yes - the poetry is more heart-driven.

Thank you so much for your sweet response!


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 3 months ago from southern USA

Dear Nellieanna,

I'm sorry to just now respond back to your lovely comment to me.

You are a prolific writer, and it makes me happy to know you write every day. I'm glad you are slowly transcribing your older poetry to your computer and immediately, the newer. What an astounding legacy for your family to cherish. Your poetry over your lifetime would make a beautiful series of collections published for the world to enjoy.

You are more up to speed than I in knowing of the "Notes" App haha ... I must download that app! We do have our phones with us at all times it seems, and it is so convenient to jot a note as to what has inspired us at any given moment. Being I did not know of the app until now, I've just been texting myself notes hahaha.

So thank you for the heads up!

I do understand about your poetry being written in long-hand and then to type, and it seemingly loses something. Maybe it's along the same lines as receiving a handwritten letter as opposed to an email. I cherish all of the handwritten letters my mother wrote to me over her lifetime.

Yes, no need to test that, dear heart.

I can't imagine going through life without being able to think or write. I love how your poetry just rises out from your lovely being from your innermost thoughts.

Peace and (((Hugs))),

Theresa


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Dear Theresa, I was thinking about you yesterday and the wonderful way your likeableness and warm spirit of genuine love and kindness surrounds you. It’s your personal aura. I was thinking back over things you’ve written, including comments and responses to others’ writings. You’re always a glowing light! Your response is never too late!! Thank you for it!

I might hope that my writings would be a legacy, but it’s always been written without any further ambition or purpose other than to express what is within me as it comes out. Capturing it the moments it emerges was/is primarily to have a personal tracing of my journey. I still seem to want to preserve it as being the journey of my being, so I don’t lose sight of it in my old age. haha. It’s still primarily that and is not a necessity that it be accepted or embraced, though, of course, that is a very wonderful thing. Like now!

The “Notes” app came on my Mac. I wouldn’t have known of it otherwise. What’s great is that what is written on the app on my phone and computer (and if I had one, an iPad) is wirelessly shared on the other devices! I began to use it when I had gone up to bed or awoke with a poem. I used to grab a scrap paper and jot it down if I could find a pencil. That was usually inadequate and required follow-through to get it in a more legible form. So — the Notes came to the rescue! I use it to jot down passing thoughts, appointments, people’s names or purpose of calls, quotes & live links to websites. It’s become one of those things I wonder how I ever managed without it! The versatility & mobility of it is just marvelous!

My parents kept literally everything. After their passing, I obtained a huge file box of letters I wrote home from when I went off to school at age 15 till their deaths in the mid 1970s! I was also keeping letters from them and others, so I do have a rather impressive collection of hand-written letters (and poetry!). I treasure them, and even more so now that handwritten (especially in cursive) has become all but obsolete.

Thank you for your lovely comments on the thread here on my hub “Mountainous Shadow of Doubt” with which Bill’s mountain challenge again stimulated responses in me twice! His pictures did it! haha! The spirit of my first little story was in sharing poignant experience and memory of history, while this poem expresses personal triumph in avoiding or overcoming possible influences of inevitable external factors which could overshadow or whittle away with transient conditions at one’s abiding, sustaining joy and faith. Did that communicate to you?

haha - well, I guess that my hoarding all kinds of written things is an extra guard against having to test my memory as I proceed further into the years. ;) Also - I hope no real persons write me, counting on their words being discarded! They’re almost sure to become history, at least for my lifetime! If I saved all those poems over the years (other than those a mean person destroyed) - how likely would it be that others’ handwritten letters or poems wouldn’t be saved? Dear Mike Friedman mentioned to me that I was the model for his person ,”The Diarist” in his 2015 publication of “The Carriage Driver”. What an honor! I must admit that I write things down because I’ve always been actively moving along to accurately remember the details. haha.

Much thanks and peace to you, dear Theresa.


Venkatachari M profile image

Venkatachari M 3 months ago from Hyderabad, India

Dear Nellieanna, here I am again going through your lovely comments sharing your thoughts and experiences. I am much thrilled to know that you are using the notes app on your Mac. That is a great thing. I am not accustomed to all these apps. My son tells me. But, I never get interested in those things. You keep changing to these latest technologies. That's a nice habit. And side by side, you love those handwritten notes and letters also. I also keep some old letters written by my wife and siblings in written form dating back to 1960s and 70s. They are a kind of treasure to me. I keep some old records of diaries in which I note daily expenses and some important occasions and all those memories. Even now, I maintain my handwritten diary. And hope to do so in future also.

I am enjoying reading your nice replies and comments and also some of those wonderful hubber friends. I like to keep in touch with such nice people always. Thanks a lot for all those nice things being shared by you.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 months ago from TEXAS Author

Thank you so much, Venkatachari. I'm pleased and honored that you have checked out my comments threads!

Yes the Notes App is quite a convenience for 'grabbing' thoughts before they dissolve in thin air, along with everything from an appealing-sounding word I might want to remember to use in a verse, phone numbers and nicknames or pets' names, a useful herb or recipe to research, a paint color, a birthday, a self-reminder to write a thank-you note, as well as those fleeting inspirations which are gone in a moment if not caught!

However, other than keeping my main devices up-to-date, I am not much of a trend-follower. In some instances, I'm slow, if ever, to adopt a new gadget. I tend to spend time beforehand deciding whether I want it and then learning how to use it if I do. Then when I've taken it on and learned to apply it, I go like the wind, putting it to use. Even as a teenager, when I was already an expert seamstress, if a new appliance for my sewing machine became available (such as a separate buttonholer), I remember getting one as a gift and didn't use it for a year! But once I did, I was a whiz at it. But just something being touted as being 'new' or 'better' must wait and pass my own criteria. So it's not a 'one-size-fits-all' habit of accepting what is newer or shinier. haha! It's selective!

There are things, to me, like handwriting which are not replaceable. There may be more efficient ways to express and communicate but efficiency is not really the standard for doing so at a deeper level. We tend to save our more treasured things, even to the way it's written, for the more precious expressions and communications. I pity those to come whose knowledge misses those more dear ways.

But then, again, there were times when western language writing was in calligraphy, much more regulated and artistic than various handwritings and scripts of our day.

Yes, yes! The Hubber friends are true treasures!!


LadyFiddler profile image

LadyFiddler 2 months ago from Somewhere in the West

Beautiful as always. How have you been ? I hope ALL is well.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 2 months ago from TEXAS Author

Thank you, dear LadyFiddler! I'm glad you think so!

I'm fine, and thanks for asking. All is well. I will be 85 in a four months, so I am truly blessed to be in good health and doing well!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 2 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Hello Nellieanna - What a powerful and hopeful piece of poetry to add to the stream of words generated by Bill's challenge. Sorry that I am late, it seems to be getting to be a habit.

Hi, snakeslane!!!!!


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 2 months ago from TEXAS Author

Mike, I am so pleased that you visited and enjoyed it!

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