Thursday, June 25, 2009

the yellow line

my father never went to war
he stayed home
to scrape the blood and bone of a child
from railway tracks
i remember this
each time
i feel i want to cross the yellow line

1 comment:

  1. Hi Coral - only just got to computer! Loved your readings on the phone - not easy to develop the detachment needed at the reading stage - so soon after the creation. Definitely multi-faceted interpretations for me in this wonderful poem. The graphic image in lines three and four anchor first readings - -memory shores up the flimsy barrier of the yellow line - the narrow band between consciousness and oblivion.

    Then, another layer of meaning emerges. The yellow line has powerful currency as the fine line between courage and fear, life and death. War and yellow commonly symbolise cowardice/fear but lines three and four recast (turn upside down) this symbolism here to evoke strength and courage. Not going to war is seen as 'heroic'; the graphic memory of what not going to war involved - courage and fearlessness to confront carnage on another front. Here, this powerful memory gives you strength and puts you on the fearless side of the yellow line, not the timid side.