The Moon is a Heartless Bully

The moon is a heartless bully

who forces the tides

and lights the beach

and owns the dark turf night.

Urges warm blood

from aching, milkless women

who glare hard into the empty hollows

where his eyes should be,

his blank face bright with cold.


Bands of nodding light stain a purpled sky

and slice an ocean thick with waves

made cruelly dangerous

by a sleep fattened moon

grown strong and round

in the turning

while sharp haphazard breakers

stab and drag the haggard sand

clawing fiercely without purchase

scrabbling lamely in the rinse

of retreating foam

and salt-sting froth

and greensick bubble hiss.


In the silent catastrophe below

buried deep inside the undertow

something hidden

has been working all along—

fooling less experienced girls

while wind-wet women

ravaged and reeking

of sea spray

pray

without moving their lips

and stare unseeing at a moon

who only serves a fickle sea

that forces itself up through the fissures

sucking sopped and drifting woodmeat

against the clumsy heft of boulders

sunk along the scum-slick jetty

unconcerned with battered shorelines

or of life, and what precedes it—


the selfish moon

that cannot kick or cure

the stubborn, dreaded habit

of letting go or taking hold

in the most reluctant places.

© 2010 susan beck

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Comments 20 comments

Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 4 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Thanks, Vespa- I appreciate the kind feedback and thank you for stopping by. Kind regards, Steele


vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

Your imagery is beautiful! It's also a fascinating metaphor: the moon and a heartless bully, since we usually think of the moon in friendly terms. I love the stanzas "Bands of nodding light stain a purpled sky and slice an ocean thick with waves". Thank you!


PDXBuys profile image

PDXBuys 4 years ago from Oregon

Beautiful! I love the images you create with words.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 5 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

Hello, Steele Fields! WOW, what a hub! LOVED every word. Voted up and away. Steele, you have the gift of poetry. That is evident. I enjoy abstract/poetry myself. And I admire you talent. Great to find you on hubs. And I am, with your permission, a fan and a follower. Sincerely, Kenneth Avery, from a rural town, Hamilton, in northwest Alabama that favors Mayberry, the town on the Andy Griffith Show. Peace and Love to you. (((kenneth)))


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 5 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Right you are, Fraser Soul-- I never quite looked at it from that perspective before-- thanks for reading and God Bless You too!


Fraser Soul profile image

Fraser Soul 5 years ago from Bloomfield, CT

Beautiful! The moon is a bully in that it lights the darkness in the dead of night; but God commands it's hiding place at the break of morn. Its a bully who fears the Lord. I loved your poem. God bless you.


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 5 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

You're right, Kosmo. She's a force to be reckoned with.


Kosmo profile image

Kosmo 5 years ago from California

Scum-slick jetty" - I like that phrase! Is it dirty? Yes, the moon is a harsh mistress, eh? I heard that somewhere. Of course, life probably wouldn't have evolved on the earth without the moon, but that's another story. Later!


Jaggedfrost profile image

Jaggedfrost 6 years ago

I am afraid that if I speak my suspicions on this work more then I would blush at the reflections to where my mind took me as a married man and fairly observant. Perhaps I am wrong and you can then perfect my words with reproof but it was a lovely poem all the same.


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Your welcome, LArry. I'm glad you liked it so much. I'm a Moonchild myself, so you're in good company!


maven101 profile image

maven101 6 years ago from Northern Arizona

Sue...This is simply beautiful and crammed with thought-provoking imagery...As a Piscean I am drawn to the sea...and its constant companion, the moon, provides the mystery within...

" while wind-wet women

ravaged and reeking

of sea spray

pray

without moving their lips

and stare unseeing at a moon

who only serves a fickle sea "...

I love poems that bring the rush of memories long forgotten, lying abandoned on the shore...Thank you for this poetic treat which I ate with pleasure...Larry


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

thanks, epi! good to feel your presence again. It is much appreciated.


epigramman profile image

epigramman 6 years ago

...gee I wish I had come up with a title this grand.

Yes I have missed you too and I am so grateful for your esteemed presence at my hub.

This piece just confirms my notion about you: pure poetry from a pure soul!!!


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Thanks to Mickey Dee and ahorseback for reading and commenting. Your positive vibes are much appreciated.


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Glad you found me-- it's nice to have you here and I appreciate the support.


attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 6 years ago from Australia

My first visit Steelfields. No time now, but i'll be back. Brilliant use of words. Loved it. Cheers


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 6 years ago

Hey Steele Fields , this is great ! Easy to follow along and so visual.


Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

Another beauty my Dear! You are wonderful!


Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

Thanks, Wayne, for always reading my stuff. You are such a comforting presence.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

An awesome and beautiful piece of work. The moon is such a sinister planet yet so tempting with its romance. I loved the following lines:

Bands of nodding light stain a purpled

sky

and slice an ocean thick with waves

made cruelly dangerous

by a sleep fattened moon

grown strong and round

in the turning.

Just excellent work, Steele! Do some more! WB

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