The Hankering


The Hankering

He offered me a tempting, pretty ring:
star sapphire, he said (black marked with white)
but I couldn't meet the cost of such a thing.

A line of white like the edge of a wing,
and deep inside the stone a tiny light,
he offered me – a tempting, pretty ring.

Just as well, perhaps, it didn't fit my fing-
er, no matter how I tried to get it right,
as I couldn't have met the cost of such a thing.

Yet the desire, I find, is lingering
for that sapphire lit within, though dark as night,
which he offered me: that tempting, pretty ring.

Surely, I think, it would have made my heart sing
to own a stone formed of both dark and bright.
But I could not meet the cost of such a thing.

No matter; I have seen! Imagining
will help me hold it in my inner sight
and keep that offered, tempting, pretty ring
priceless, beyond the cost of a mere thing.



Comments

  1. Very skilful, beautifully done!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love that hankering for the tempting pretty ring. Your description was of the ring was stunninghttps://enheduannasdaughter.blogspot.com/logout?d=https://www.blogger.com/logout-redirect.g?blogID%3D4587904705257054074%26postID%3D3996275372130233255 with: for that sapphire lit within, though dark as night,

    I thought the line break of this was clever:
    Just as well, perhaps, it didn't fit my fing-(er).

    This was done very well, not forced at all into the villanelle pattern.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, I like this. That's a cheeky line break you've used - works very well. I like the overall feel - I think we've all known that strange desire for something tempting and pretty, and you capture it well. The technical villanelling is great, I like the slight change in the repeating lines, and it feels really unforced. I like the contrast of the conversational tone and the very formal structure.

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  4. Hey Rosemary,

    I spent some time with the poem because the idea was fascinating.
    But I am not sure I quite get it. So I'd like to speculate on what you were doing, and hope you give feedback.
    I'm imagining you are simultaneously talking (making a metaphor) both about the ring and the relationship. You turned down a long-term relationship because the short term did not have the costs that the long term inevitably would. So, though sweet in the short term, you wanted to avoid the long term cost of a good relationship going bad?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's entirely factual. I really loved the star sapphire ring that was for sale, which the vendor was keen to sell me, but felt I couldn't afford it. I console myself with the fact that I can enjoy its beauty in memory without having to own it.

      I saw the possibility that the situation could be taken as metaphorical, thought about writing the poem in such a way as to capitalise on that, and in the end decided not to – but if you wish to read that into it, that's your privilege. While it's my job to convey what I intend as well as I can, a reader is free to bring to a poem whatever interpretation they may discern.

      Delete
  5. Ah, thanx Rosemary. Ah, a straight-forward poem. Cool. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love the thought of being offered something so fine, and still feel that the cost is to great. There is a notion that a gift needs to be reciprocated which maybe it shouldn't be felt like at all. Then on the other hand if you buy it for yourself.

    Such a pity the ring didn't fit (but that's an easy matter for jeweler).

    The thought of a sapphire with darkness and an inner light is stunning.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cost here did mean financial cost; I was contemplating buying it, but it was rather beyond my pocket.

      Delete
  7. I love the contrast you described in an item filled with beauty.

    ReplyDelete
  8. What a priceless villanelle you've written! My favorite lines:

    Just as well, perhaps, it didn't fit my fing-
    er, no matter how I tried to get it right,
    as I couldn't have met the cost of such a thing.
    :-)

    And being blind, I can relate to these:
    ... Imagining
    will help me hold it in my inner sight
    and keep that offered, tempting, pretty ring
    priceless, beyond the cost of a mere thing.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love the title, Rosemary – ‘hankering’ is a word one doesn’t hear so often these days. I also love that it tells a story and that beautiful description of the ring: ‘A line of white like the edge of a wing, / and deep inside the stone a tiny light’.

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  10. I guess that ring came with too big of a price. Very enjoyable.

    ReplyDelete

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