The Allegory of the Photographs

They are born in a cave where they are chained so they can see only shadows of objects on the walls of the cave before them. One of them escapes to the wonders outside, but when he returns they do not believe him . . . .

— synopsis of “The Allegory of the Cave” by Plato from The Republic

In some, she smiles impishly;
In others, vacant dementia . . .

Youngest sister
You have gone on
Before us
Have left the cave
Left us chained
Fixated on images, skewered by them like collected moths.
You smile at us now
Lined up with us then
On the row of lawn chairs
In front of the cottage
On that sunny, funny day.

All sunny days
So yellow-green seen in this
Cold grey February dusk
On the dining-room table
Cats prowl curiously
Lounging on the coloured
Rectangles that wait for
Their resting place in the album.

Those summers so green, so blue, so ochre, so soft
So soft, so sweet, so warm river flowing ’round the curved canoe hull
Gliding casting its shadow through the green waving weeds
On the soft river bottom.
Perch glimmer horizontal green striped and orange silver flashes
Straight to the frying pan! Children laugh out of control, out of touch,
Out of mind, out of
Cool chocolaty woods that hide, nurture, bathe youth in sweetness.

Can you make me a copy of that one we all beg.

Are you waiting in those pages for us
To rejoice in that joke on the tip of your tongue?
Who else will with such innocent stealth
Craft such a raunchy punch line?

The rest of us are here, standing
Lounging around the table
Looking at pictures
While your daughter
Glances furtively out of the cave for you.


The poem (2:10)

The voice of the poet

riverwriter reads:  


The commentary (0:57)

The voice of the poet

riverwriter reads:  

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About riverwriter

Poet, playwright, duplicate bridge player, website designer, cottager, husband, father, grandfather, former athlete, carpenter, computer helper for my friends, theatre designer, backstage polymath, retired teacher of highschool English, drama, art, a baritone singer in a barbershop quartet, who knows what else? wordcurrents is on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/wordcurrents/ Doug also has a Facebook page, "Incognitio", related to his novels.
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2 Responses to The Allegory of the Photographs

  1. reb says:

    thank you. i really enjoyed listening to your words.

  2. riverwriter says:

    Thank you for commenting. Podcasting is a new venture for me; and it fits nicely into my new open mike ventures.

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