Kirkdale Bookshop’s Sestina

For those who love the night the moon brings comfort.

She spreads her sultry rays of gold and silver,

Inspiring in their hearts a sense of longing

That takes them to a place of special wonder.

Wherein, the moonlight brings a mood so tranquil

That time itself is lost in her reflection.


And who can find themselves in this reflection

Yet not become beguiled by promised comfort?

Allowing lapping shores to be so tranquil

That nothing could entice them, even silver,

To leave the moon behind and lose her wonder,

Condemned for evermore to restless longing.


By whom can we be freed from futile longing?

And would we choose such freedom on reflection?

It seems as though the choice might make us wonder

If gaining one’s desire would bring forth comfort

As precious as the light both gold and silver,

For which the price is never to be tranquil.


But such is the temptation to be tranquil

That dancers in the dark may cease their longing

To see a time that’s bathed in rays of silver,

Without the fear of catching our reflection

When life has served to rob us of our comfort,

And touched our days with sorrow and no wonder.


I once reached for the moon and she did wonder,

How I could sit there in a space so tranquil.

When, touching only dark, I felt that comfort

That comes with being bound by loss of longing.

She challenged me to catch her wan reflection

Upon my passive lake of silent silver.


Sometimes I hear her tones of liquid silver

And freeze upon the broken hour in wonder

Believing in the truth of her reflection,

Absorbing all her words to make me tranquil.

Admitting I can spend my life in longing,

‘Though I can see no welcome sign of comfort.


Those who desire the silver won’t be tranquil.

They wonder if the moon can heal their longing

To end their dark reflection with some comfort.



This was suggested by Kirkdale Bookshop and has a very strict form which I won’t explain here.  I chose the 11 syllable per line form favoured by Danté.  It was quite a challenge!

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