The Hollow

26 Jan

The Hollow

You sit there, in a deep hollow in the tree roots.
You sit and tend the fire which keeps you alive, and has always done so.
It kept your parents and their parents alive before you.
You gaze intently into its encapsulating, entrancing flames
As you feed it with your surroundings and your time.

You know there is a big, dark wood outside of your hollow,
Your den, refuge. Sheltered prison.
But your fire is warm, comforting, familiar.
There are better and bigger fires, you are sure,
And better and bigger hollows.
But this is your hollow and you are in it
And so are your flickering flames.

You glance over your shoulder,
From time to time,
To see that the wood is still there,
Shadowed, mysterious,
Intimidating, vast, possibly.
Bleak, surely.

You hear the pat-drip-patter,

the cold stark light around the edges,

opportunity knocking,

Out there in the wood;
Raindrops hammering down,

You hear them,
And you are glad of your hollow,
Your blinkers and shroud,
To keep you from the mercy of those ever-grey clouds.

Yes. It is good here in my hollow.

And yet sometimes you wonder,
What might be out there in that sad, entangled, thorny space.
If you were to blunder outside, lose your way,
For, lets say, a day,
Would it really be such a dreary place?

The thought itself scares you.
Turning back around,
You find the fire’s glowing comfort,
Its reassuring crackling sound,
Both sooths and warns of danger.
Stay close, dear friend, or for ever be a stranger.

The fire needs you, and you need it.
Though now and again,
I’m glad, relieved
To admit,
The mind wanders.

There was one, you know,
Once long ago,
Who took the step.
Who crept out there,
While others slept,
Who walked, stalked,
Saw, heard and talked?

You felt rain on your skin,
And found it to your liking,
In an odd sort of way.

You ran, tripped
Over a rut in the path.
It healed,
You lived,
The bruise didn’t last.

And how much bigger and better
Is this sunlit wood,
Compared with that dingy hollow
You used to call the world?

Night set in at last.
It always would.
The rain returned,
As did you in the end.

To say you crawled back is unfair.
The fire, once found and stoked,
Welcomed your homecoming,
With wide open arms
And a wild dance of brand new shadows.


One Response to “The Hollow”

  1. mouthypoets February 13, 2012 at 12:17 pm #

    I am really keen to know what you want to portray with this poem? What story are you telling, what emotion and message are you trying to evoke in your reader/audience? There is some great imagery and the idea itself is an innovative and fantastical one that reminds me of narnia in a great way! But I can’t grab on to any outstanding characters or messages?


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