Clarity of Truth

Written for:  Poets United Midweek Motif~Narcissus (Vanity/Narcissism)
The narcissus is one of December’s birth flowers. According to Greek myth, it is the flower that grew when the vain young man Narcissus drowned in the lake in which he admired his own reflection. There’s more to the story–Echo, goddesses, love, and, related to it is the story of Persephone and Demeter, a pomegranate, death, winter and summer. Picking a narcissus flower separated Persephone from her peers, and Hades kidnapped her. Her story associates her with the life cycle of plants.

“The main condition for the achievement of love is the overcoming of one’s narcissism. ” ~ Erich Fromm, The Art of Loving

Your Challenge: Write a new poem in response to the themes of one of the images included in this prompt.

Sylvia Plath

Sylvia Plath | Source

So clear, so bright
yet, if I do not turn
on the light, you are
dim and filmy
as an old photograph.
Why should I clean
you, and make the image
every clearer and brighter?
So still, you never move,
or lie. Yet I can stand
before you unmoving
and change a little more
each day.

About purplepeninportland

I am a freelance poet, born and bred in Brooklyn, New York. I live with my husband, John, and two charming rescue dogs–Marion Miller and Murphy. We spent eight lovely years in Portland, OR, but are now back in New York. My goal is to create and share poetry with others who write, or simply enjoy reading poetry. I hope to touch a nerve in you, and feel your sparks as well.
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14 Responses to Clarity of Truth

  1. oldegg says:

    Yes, we live on yet the ones we have lost remain the same and you wonder whether they would even recognise us anymore for we have changed so much; not only that they might be cross for what we have done in the meantime!


  2. X says:

    Is it the truth that the mirror tells? Or is it how we interpret what we see that tells the lies?
    It never moves, but it can move us…to tears, to contemplation…to vanity…or humbleness.


  3. susan says:

    I feel this way about Plath, and sometimes I am angry at her for leaving, Your poem also eerily brings to mind Dorian Gray of Oscar Wilde fame, and our relationship to our art. Mystery lies within.


  4. Wow! This is profound….we cant change the other but we can and do change ourselves. I loved this, Sara!


  5. Rommy says:

    Reminds me of some of the wistfulness I feel when I pick up my childhood favorites. Anne, Sarah and Ramona stay the same, but I have not.


  6. sanaarizvi says:

    This is so beautifully potent! Though we can’t change the other person but we can to change ourselves.


  7. wildchild47 says:

    Bittersweet in the release – change is the only constant – yet it can be so difficult to accept. And what a stellar line – Why should I clean you? –

    this is a wonderful poem – simple yet it offers more than just a casual reading … 🙂


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