hereby dragonflies

For the dVerse prompt “dungeons and derivatives“:

Nothing comes from nothing,
there is no spontaneous generation.
Poems grow from words in waiting,
that swim beneath the surface
like nymphs in a pond.
I feel their movement
but I cannot see them clearly,
cannot grasp them.
Not until they are ready,
and then they rise,
seemingly coming into being
from the water itself.
They dry their wings,
and arrange themselves
ready for manoeuvres.
And hereby flights of dragonflies

There were two options, and I chose the second one: 

“You could choose to write about words seeming far out of reach of the Poet’s hands or as an obstruction which makes movement or flow difficult or impossible.”

and to think of a few words, then use derivatives of those words in the poem. 

The words that came to mind for me were “here be dragons” (yeah, a bit obvious with a D&D prompt), which became hereby, being and dragonflies.

Tricky prompt, Sanaa, with the two requirements! 


Filed under poem

19 responses to “hereby dragonflies

  1. This is splendid, magical, glorious, philosophical, scientific…. I just love it.

    • Thank you Worms!
      There’s a book by Una Woodruff called “Inventorum Natura” which has the most wonderful pictures of butterflies growing from ivy, etc, that I had in mind when I started writing this. But I don’t seem to have a copy anymore.

  2. You did this eloquently. What creativity, Kate. Keep going. Loving it.

  3. I love your response: a beautiful description of the arrival of poems into our lives 🙂

  4. cream elite!
    my two left feet
    not compromise
    no grace
    nor saving face
    north to south
    see how the seasons change rearrange

  5. Glad you made the list with a bit of time to spare! Love your take on Part II of the Sanaa challenge!

  6. Lately, I have seen so many dragonflies, and this tied so well into that image.

  7. I enjoyed the whole poem, Kate, but I’m now stuck on the first line: “Nothing comes from nothing.” It’s so profound the more I think about it! I also love the notion of words swimming like nymphs beneath the surface of a pond 🙂

    • Thanks Sunra!
      “Nothing comes from nothing” was Parmenides, or at least the first recorded version of it.
      Lucretius unpacked it:
      “But by observing Nature and her laws. And this will lay
      The warp out for us—her first principle: that nothing’s brought
      Forth by any supernatural power out of naught.
      For certainly all men are in the clutches of a dread—
      Beholding many things take place in heaven overhead
      Or here on earth whose causes they can’t fathom, they assign
      The explanation for these happenings to powers divine.
      Nothing can be made from nothing—once we see that’s so,
      Already we are on the way to what we want to know.”
      He also said there was only atoms and the void. 🙂
      I like it because as a physicist the closest we have to a belief system is a provisional acceptance of conservation laws – energy, charge, and, to a first approximation for simple systems involving pulleys and cables, conservation of string.

      • Thank you so much for sharing that, that is fascinating! I love these lines:
        “And this will lay the warp out for us” – makes me think of time warps and the bending of particles.
        “For certainly all men are in the clutches of a dread” – how we fear what we don’t understand.
        I love the idea of there being only atoms and the void, it’s so poetic even though it’s true in one respect. How easy it is to forget we all consist of particles in constant motion.
        Your last sentence went over my head a little bit I’m afraid, I’m not as learned as you in this area, it made my mind boggle! (I didn’t realise you were a physicist?! Is there nothing you can’t do??)
        The line “nothing comes from nothing” still makes my mind boggle. The fact that “no-thing” means no one thing but everything as one – does that make sense? So to me, it sort of reads as “everything comes from everything” because we are all as one so no one thing comes from no one thing.
        Oh dear, what am I talking about on a Sunday morning?! 😂

        • Conservation principles just say however much there is, that’s all there is – you can move it around and change it’s form, but the total amount is the same. They apply to a bunch of things. Not really to string on an “all of time and space” basis 😀 but if you pull one end, the other end moves by the same amount – which is a surprisingly useful thing! Physics is easier than a lot of other areas, because there are only a few core ideas. Conservation is probably the most central. Economics is hard, because there is no conservation; money can come from nothing, go nowhere, and have no real meaning.
          I think you’re doing some deep thinking there for a Sunday morning 😀
          There’s a bit in a Terry Pratchett book where a character asks a sort of supercomputer “why” and the computer says “why what?” and the guy asks “why… anything?” and the computer says “because everything”. Sounds like you came to the same conclusion. 😀 ​
          And there’s heaps I can’t do, including my own tax return – I freeze in panic at it!

        • Ha ha ha! That is a fantastic explanation, you have explained it so succinctly, thank you! You’ve also given me some reading homework to look into but I’ll enjoy it 😊 I love the Terry Pratchett analogy, brilliant! 😂❤️

  8. sanaarizvi

    This is exquisitely drawn! I especially love the image; “They dry their wings,
    and arrange themselves ready for manoeuvres.” Thank you so much for adding your voice to the prompt. 💝💝

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