Dragonflies & Raindrops

It starts with a single languid drop,
beating a hardpan drum.
Cicadas warble a scorched-earth vibrato,
rushing skyward, the long-dry undone.

Rusty tears trickle their bullnose percussion
on verandah iron and brass. While the red dusts
of torment yawn and drink deeply,
thirsty as fire-kissed grass.

My hard-bitten mongrels, in Waratah shade,
flick ears laid unseasonably low.
Drought threatens to claim what Tigers have not.
Limp tails tell tales of woe.

Resembling slender men, brown withered stems
raise limp hands, tattered and burned.
A chorus begins, Magpie trills and woodwind;
life to the outback returned.

Movement staccatos; even dragonflies pause
from their wild tumbles and dips.
A long-absent lover, in the final refrain,
bestows a moist kiss on parched lips.

by Ryan Stone

* Tigers -> the venomous Australian Tiger Snake

Click here for audio

First published in Of Words and Water 2014


66 thoughts on “Dragonflies & Raindrops

  1. Your imagery is out of this world! I had to stop and re-read the line about “cicadas warbling a scorched-earth vibrato” because it was so stunning. I love how effortlessly you “vividify” everyday images (please excuse the atrocious grammar, but I really can’t think of a better word than “vividify” in this context.) For example, your descriptions of “fire-kissed grass” and “brown stalks resembling slender men” brought extremely strong visuals to my mind’s eye. 😊

    Also, another effect of this beautiful poem is that it makes me want to go and live in the Australian outback! 😊


  2. I love rhyme that is done well. I abandoned my own attempts at poetry with rhyme scheme after being disappointed in how contrived and shallow they were coming out. You do it so effortlessly, there is a wonderful flow and rhythm to this piece. The rhyme isn’t overwhelming or distracting in any way, it beautifuly blends in and unquestionably belongs.


  3. You’ve transported me into nature’s lap! What an exquisite description, Ryan. I love how this song unfolds and you’ve weaved in those references to music seamlessly. Loved this through and through 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wonderful feedback thankyou πŸ™‚ I’m really happy to know the rhythm flowed, that’s exactly how I think of the natural world – a subtle music flowing beneath the surface. Thanks for your thoughtful words, I hope your week is magic πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I enjoyed hearing your reading very much–though I expected your voice to be lower…odd, how we look at a face and hear a certain voice in our heads πŸ™‚ If you have a spare minute, I could use some help re doing similar audio at my blog: there’s a free (and accepted by WP) program–“cloud mix”, or something like that. I need to know if it would be comparable to SoundCloud–and whether one’s recording is then available to the entire world, or just the blog audience. Thanks in advance πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This one kills me absolutely. Such an amazing salute to your country, the sounds, the sights, everything. Bringing us in there with you. I think this is my favorite piece I’ve read of your work. Stunning. Plus the excellent recording – thank-you!! ❀

    Liked by 1 person

      • I feel the same way about where I live – I love these type of pieces!! I’ve done a lot of reading about Australia, and I’d love to visit, though there does seem to be a disturbingly high number of seemingly benign things that cause death. Personally, I just really want to hug a Wombat. The kangaroos would probably kick me. πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

      • Darn it! Just like those Koalas huh? All good until you’re up in their face. Ah, well, it’s probably for the best. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh yeah, koalas are definitely bad boys…don’t let their cuddly exterior fool you. We really don’t have much family-friendly wildlife here. Lovely to watch but most pack a mean punch πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: Interview with Ryan Stone – Mandibelle16

  7. Pingback: ‘Rewind Interview’ with Writer, Blogger, & Poet Ryan Stone #amwriting #interview #nonfiction #poetry – Mandibelle16

  8. Pingback: ‘Rewind Interview’ With Poet, Writer, and Blogger Ryan Stone #amwriting #interview #nonfiction | Go Dog Go CafΓ©

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