Friday, March 26, 2021

Poetry Friday: Dizzying Dizains

I think Tanita was kidding when she suggested "dizzying" as a requirement for our March dizain challenge. But maybe not. Writing in a form with several rules can be head-spinning. That said, I quite like this form, having written two in the past few years (Squaring up the Dizain and If Digitopolis Had a Chapel.) The line count (ten) equals the syllable count (ten per line) which makes it compact and sturdy.  As does the core of double couples in the middle of a solid rhyme scheme (ababbccdcd.)  

So I thought it safe, in such a well-built poem, to play with the dizzying wanderings of life.  And even though the completely square form of a dizain is counter to the lovely curves of a labyrinth, I find exploring them both to bring a sense of peace. Exploration within boundaries, life both circular and purposeful.  


If everything adds up, days fairly squared,

if I mark my hours, no circling around,

even then, I am undone, unprepared

for the arcs of my years, how I am bound, 

bent, broken to the curve of old ground;

battle lines not straight but a swelling spin;

what I leave behind circles, floods back in;

seeking center, even math undulates: 

all was once, all will be, all will have been;

what is life but the path our dance creates?

         ----Sara Lewis Holmes (all rights reserved) 

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Poetry Friday is hosted today by Soul Blossom Living


  1. I read this aloud several times. I just love "what I leave behind circles, floods back in." You've surely captured the walk along a labyrinth and life's journey here. And now I want to find one and take a contemplative walk.

  2. even then, I am undone, unprepared

    for the arcs of my years, how I am bound,

    bent, broken to the curve of old ground;

    I love how this has echoes, too, of how our lives are sort of tied to this ball of mud, turning in place, circling back to what always pulls us in - gravity, age, and eventually the same end for everything. Like Tricia, I had to read this one out loud - the rhyme for dizain's is sometimes so subtle and yet it sings.

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  4. Life has its changes which you so musingly wrote, but there are times I feel that "even then, I am undone, unprepared
    for the arcs of my years" that is what makes life interesting, sometimes hard, but still I like the wavering path. The poem can bring a lot of conversation!

  5. Your words are true. "What I leave behind circles, floods back in." Yes it does.

  6. First time visitor Sara. I know a couple of your Poetry Sisters: Tricia and Laura. I have read some of the past poems Laura has shared. That said, I find your poem stunning and one to contemplate and read again. What I saw from your poem was the difference from those who want their lives in a routine and it is organized and regular, something you can count on and then others who meander through theirs walking that path not taken perhaps, or choosing the side trip for fun, circling around finding peace in the journey and not caring if you stick to the schedule. Not sure it is what you intended but I really like this a lot.
    Janet Clare F.

  7. "what I leave behind circles, floods back in..."
    OH MY, Sara! So powerful. So lovely.

  8. Sara, this is wonderful. I love the spinning, the recursive nature--of both a labyrinth and our lives. Wow--this one's a keeper!


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