cold comfort

It was not Night, for all the Bells
Put out their Tongues, for Noon

Emily Dickinson.

a heavy blanket or two between
her and October mornings
fog curtaining windows
pressed against panes
voyeuristically
she defies its walleyed glare
the demanding clock
daywear strewn across a chair

stays there
while spiders criss-cross
chimney breast to grate, corralling
devilish despair
downstairs

Covered this poem with just 44 words for Merrill's quadrille prompt: Blanket

57 Comments on “cold comfort

  1. This is deliciously dark and just the perfect description of October as the days grow colder. I love; “voyeuristically she defies its walleyed glare,”… such beautiful use of language 💝💝

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  2. This little bit “fog curtaining windows
    pressed against panes
    voyeuristically
    she defies its walleyed glare” was just fantastic.

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  3. Witty piece – I particularly like that loooong pause between end of stanza 1 and start of stanza 2 – and rather than springing out of bed, the clothes can… stay there on the chair – laughing here.

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  4. I love the voyeuristic fog curtains, and the enjambment of the first to second stanza. Also, the somewhat ironic title. . . .so much in few words.

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  5. I love the alliterative title, Laura, which reminds me of the wonderful book Cold Comfort Farm and ‘something nasty in the woodshed’. Your poem brought to mind the heavy blankets my grandmother always had on the beds in winter, one of which I inherited and sat on top of our duvet for many winters. I love the personification in ‘fog curtaining windows / pressed against panes / voyeuristically’.

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    • What an awful place that farm was! I loved my blanketed bed as a child and am tempted to ditch the duvet. And thank you for your appreciation

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  6. The blanket and the fog both seem to be acting as insulation, protection, maybe – or detachment. Maybe both are necessary.

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  7. I like the fog pressed against the panes like it even more after your saying it has a double meaning.

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  8. Love the alliteration in the last several lines. The feeling of comfort in this. I love it when the house is blanketed in fog although it reminds me a bit of that move, The Others. Weighted blankets do not east anxietry and depression alas! I only sleep two hours a night now instead of the four.

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    • weighted blankets and the fog are both comfort and oppressive – still addicted to alliteration but have to tone it down – thank you

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  9. We had the fog this morning, but it was our day for ditching the extra bed layers.
    I am not ever a morning person!

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  10. Fog can feel menacing, and here it’s pressing against the panes, while that same menace seems to be waiting with
    “devilish despair
    downstairs”

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  11. The blanket is a comfort in those depairing hours. I can feel that demanding clock pressing on my face.

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  12. Wonderful work, Laura, though this arachnophobic old geezer cringed the whole way through. Other than the spider, like I said, wonderful work.

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    • lovely feedback from you Ron – spiders seem to feature quite often in my poems but then I am a bit of an arachnophile

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  13. Oh I feel that chilled morning. Not cold enough to turn on the heat, yet chilled enough to not want to get out of bed and face the morning. Well done!

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  14. Wonderful contrast between the warm comfort of the blankets and the world that awaits and can’t be put off

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  15. “She defies its walleyed glare” is such a striking statement of indomitable spirit battling oppressive despair. Love this, Laura.

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  16. Really great descriptions of the fog against the window and the spiders closing in the chimney grate while you roll over under your blanket! Very nice!

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  17. This sums up so poetically that feeling of not wanting to get out of bed on cold autumn and winter mornings: the hibernation instinct!

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