Falling Days by Kate Copeland

Niagara, 1857 by Frederic Edwin Church
Image courtesy of the National Gallery of Art

Now the gulls
have chased away
the long- and lacewings,
Now the silt has risen 
from the river floor 
to overturn her days and ways,
and now their boat trip 
has not shown the mist
she had hoped to see,
she sees that rainbows still fall on,
that tides rest at her feet
and barrels drift away anyway.
He might brighten up
once they drive down to the lakes,
once he stops mocking her love 
for the waterfalls that make her 
think straight, he wants to 
control her rise and fall
but her moods to sing like birds 
and butterflies, is a step further
towards the edge of
falling days, where her best choice
is, to choose her road carefully, is 
to be aware of plunging 
without sinking. To see he might just
be in her way. Dive in, dear girl, 
but rise, down the shiny waves.

This poem, inspired by Frederic Edwin Church’s 1857 painting Niagara, was first published in The Ekphrastic ReviewOctober 20, 2023 in their Ekphrastic Challenges series. Read about ekphrastic poetry in Niagara.

Kate Copeland

Kate Copeland started absorbing words ever since a little lass. Her love for language led her to teaching; her love for art & water to poetry…please find her pieces at The Ekphrastic Review, First Lit.Review-East, Wildfire Words, The Weekly/Five South, AltPoetry and others. Over the years, she worked at festivals and Breathe-Read-Write-sessions; she is now curator-editor for The Ekphrastic Review and runs linguistic-poetry workshops for the IWWG this year. Kate was born @ harbour city and adores housesitting at the world.  https://www.instagram.com/kate.copeland.poems/  

Read Dad, you have left us, also by Kate Copeland


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