Moss of loneliness (NaPoWriMo)

The green, moist moss of loneliness in my chest
supine leaves whisper unsung songs

The whispered songs follow me in my dreams
blistering pearls fall freely from the eyes

Blistering pearls falling with thundering noise
leaving razor thin cuts where they fall

Razor thin bloodless cuts left by angry words
pain rises like irate welts all across my body

Irate welts pulse like the vein in my neck
beating, beating, beating waiting for respite

Beating, beating down the door
desultory despair comes looking for shelter

Shelter seeking despair finds welcoming home in
the green, moist moss of loneliness in my chest

Today’s NaPoWriMo challenge is to write a “duplex.” A “duplex” is a variation on the sonnet, developed by the poet Jericho Brown. Here’s one of his first “Duplex” poems, and here is a duplex written by the poet I.S. Jones. Like a typical sonnet, a duplex has fourteen lines. It’s organized into seven, two-line stanzas. The second line of the first stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the second stanza, the second line of the second stanza is echoed by (but not identical to) the first line of the third stanza, and so on. The last line of the poem is the same as the first.


84 thoughts on “Moss of loneliness (NaPoWriMo)

  1. This is so intense it is even hard to handle….probably the most intense of your poetry I have read…the one before this hard a razor hard edge, but this one can cut…..stunning. That loneliness, yes…….

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I know, this went much darker than I wanted but I posted it anyway. I guess it has more to do with external factors than with any thing I am personally going through. Though loneliness does engulf from time to time. Thanks so much, Ain. Much appreciated.


  2. A very interesting poetry form which highlights the emotional pain by repetition and tying all the lines together. I felt the beating and the pain – hope it bears fruit in the green..

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Punam, it’s been a minute since I last read you. 🙂 Mostly my fault for being inactive, but I always enjoy circling back to your work. I love this piece. It underscores anguish and mental health greatly, and how loneliness impacts the psyche that any bit of refuge or welcoming is uplifting, even if only a little. It delineates the pain and struggle of such individual well. The repetition was also very effective and hard-hitting, especially with the vulnerability in what revealing our neck shows. Beautifully written and even more so with the implicit imagery underlying. ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Lucy, it is so wonderful to read your comment. Sometimes we need to be inactive to gain strength to be active again.
      Loneliness can be so debilitating and it is not about being alone as you know so well.
      Thank you so much for your appreciation and presence here. ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “green, moist moss of loneliness in my chest” – the beauty of these words hooked me deep and you continued with similar exquisite choice of words throughout your poem, I absolutely loved immersing in.

    Liked by 2 people

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