Poem with an explanation: the hail storm

the sun rises
as darkness falls
hurrying out
into the hail storm

from the moment the wheels
to the halls of stone
the jackals bite
the hyenas laugh

into the cave
the walls of respite
but only for a moment
then to the storm

the sentinels’ eyes
are turned away
their ears of stone
do not hear

the wheels again
and steps are taken
nightmares continue
during the day

through the glass
the crowd jeers
and comforting hands
are somewhere else

into the night
a place of escape
dreading the moment
of the sun’s return

 

This poem is about being bullied.  In the poem, there is a little boy who is bullied at school.

The boy wakes up (the sun rises) and the reality that he will be bullied that day hits him as he does (as darkness falls).  In a strange situation, he has to hurry to get ready to go to school (hurrying out), a place he really doesn’t want to go (into the hail storm).

As soon as the bus comes (from the moment the wheels) the bullying starts.  It continues at school (to the halls of stone), where bullies harass the boy (the jackals bite) while their friends laugh (the hyenas laugh).

During lunch, the boy hides in the bathroom (into the cave the walls of respite), but lunch is only so long (but only for a moment) and he has to go back among the bullies (then to the storm).

Teachers in the school don’t seem to notice what is happening (the sentinels’ eyes are turned away their ears of stone do not hear).

When the school day is over, the bus takes the boy home (the wheels again) and the boy walks inside his house (and steps are taken).  Rather than finding relief though, the pain the boy experiences continues (nightmares continue during the day).

The bullies harass the boy through social media while others find it humorous and join in (through the glass the crowd jeers). The boy’s parents, seeing him as weak and not understanding the severity of the problem, don’t provide him any comfort (and comforting hands are somewhere else).

The boy goes to sleep (into the night) and finds some peace in the unconsciousness (a place of escape), but at the same time, he dreads the next morning (dreading the moment of the sun’s return).

This poem is about continued plight.  It is about someone feeling helpless.

 

If you like poems with explanations, M. Sakran has an eBook of them.  It is called Understanding: poems with explanations.  It is a collection of twenty original poems, with explanations of each of them. The main purpose of the book is to help readers expand their understanding of poetry through the explanations.

The poems in the book cover a variety of topics such as poverty, homelessness, pain, neglect, crime and illness.

The explanations look at the overall meanings of the poems, the meanings of individual parts of the poems, and form in the poems.

Poem with an explanation: Injustice

A bell,
a bell,
falling,
sliding,
the cries are heard,
the cries are heard,
and then laughter.

A bell,
a bell,
falling,
sliding,
the cries are heard,
the cries are heard,
and then laughter.

The music box plays.

A moment of resolve.

A bell,
a bell,
falling,
stop,
swing,
swing,
falling,
sliding,
a voice is heard,
no laughter.

A bell,
a bell.

A door,
a voice,
a plea,
a smirk,
a word,
a wink,
and banishment.

A door,
a gathering.

Injustice.

 

This poem is about injustice.  The poem is about a child in middle school.  Each day at school the child is bullied by a group of students.  One day, the child decides to fight back and beats up one of the bullies.  The child is then called to the principal’s office and suspended for fighting.  As the child leaves, they hear the comradery between the principal, a parent of the main bully whom the child beat up and the bully.  The child understands the injustice.

This poem is about a situation that sometimes happens in life, that when someone fights back against a wrong, they themselves get punished.  There are a number of situations and circumstances like this in life.  An example might include a person who gets fired when they complain against the actions of their boss.

The poem starts with the start of the school day (A bell).  After the first class (a bell) the bullying happens.  The child’s backpack is knocked to the floor (falling), the child is shoved to the ground (sliding), the child is taunted by the bullies (the cries are heard), the child pleas to be left alone (the cries are heard), and the bullies laugh (and then laughter).

The second stanza is a repeat of the first to show the repetition of the act.

The third stanza says The music box plays.  This is in reference to the repetition of bells and is meant to show the passage of school days.  The idea is that the bullying happens each day and happens for many days.

In the fourth stanza, the child decides to do something about their problem.

In the fifth stanza, the school day starts (A bell), the first class ends (a bell), and the child’s backpack is knocked to the ground (falling).  This time though, as the bully tries to shove the child, the child stops them (stop).  The child swings at the bully twice, hitting them with their fists (swing, swing).  The bully falls down (falling) and slides on the floor (sliding).  The child stands tall and says they will be a victim no longer (a voice is heard).  None of the bullies laugh (no laughter).

In the sixth stanza, the next school day comes (A bell), the first class ends (a bell), but there is no bullying.

In the seventh stanza, the child is called into the principal’s office (A door).  The principal chastises the child for fighting in school (a voice).  The child tries to explain the situation (a plea).  The main bully, who is also in the room with their parent and is portraying themselves as a victim, smirks at the situation (smirk).  The principal tells the child they don’t care for their explanation, that fighting is never allowed (a word).  The principal looks at the bully’s parent with a knowing look (a wink), and the child is suspended from school.

As the child leaves the principal’s office (A door), they hear the familiar style of talking between the principal, the bully’s parent and the bully (a gathering).  All three are friends.

The child realizes the injustice of the situation (Injustice).

 

P. S. Happy twelfth day of Christmas.

Poem with an explanation: Where were you?

Where were you,
upon that day,
when specters came,
and had their way?

Where were you,
amongst the wail,
as teeth did bite,
and claws did flail?

Where were you,
amongst the cries,
as blood did flow,
whilst hope demise?

Where were you,
unlike the one,
although so small,
his fear was none?

Where were you,
like days of past,
when he did fight,
up to the last?

Where were you,
as there one lay,
when specters came,
and had their way?

 

This poem is an admonition.  The speaker in the poem is chastising someone for not helping them in their time of need.  In the poem, there are three characters and one group of characters.  There is the one asking the questions, the one he is asking them to, the one from the past, and the specters.

In this poem, the one speaking is describing being attacked.  He is attacked by those he calls specters.  The poem takes place after the attack.

In the first stanza, the speaker questions someone who did not help him.  He asks why the one was not there when he was attacked.

In the second stanza, the speaker describes the attack.  He describes crying out and being hurt.  He again asks, why there was no help.

In the third stanza, the speaker describes the finality of the attack.  He describes his pain, the severity of the attack and his hope failing.

In the fourth stanza, the poem takes a turn.  A new character is introduced.  This character is someone from the past who is no longer there.  This character is someone the speaker could and did rely on in the past.  In this stanza, the speaker questions the one who didn’t help him again.  He makes a comparison between this one and the one from the past.  He describes the courage of the one from the past.

In the fifth stanza, the speaker continues the idea of the stanza before.  He describes this one from the past fighting for him until the last moment.

The sixth stanza comes back to ideas from before.  It describes the result of the attack and asks again why there was no help.

This poem describes a general idea.  It describes someone experiencing pain from some other group (whether physical or emotional or both) and questioning why their friend did not help them.  Imagine someone being bullied by a group and seeing their friend stand by and do nothing.  This is the general idea, although the notion could be applied to other situations, some more realistic and some more metaphorical.

In the poem, the one experiencing pain remembers someone from their past who used to help them, but is no longer there, and wonders why their current friend did not help them.

Although the one who didn’t help doesn’t answer the questions in the poem, the answer is, that they were afraid.  They were afraid of what would happen to themselves if they intervened in the situation, and so they did nothing.

This is a form poem.  There are six stanzas that all follow the same form.  The form is:

Line 1: Where were you (a three syllable line)
Line 2: 4 syllables/Rhyming line
Line 3: 4 syllables
Line 4: 4 syllables/Rhyming line/Ends in a question mark

Additionally, the last stanza mirrors the first.  In the two stanzas, lines 1, 3 and 4 match.  Additionally, the rhyming sound is the same.

*****

Do you like poems with explanations?  Do you like to support writers whose work you enjoy?

M. Sakran has a self-published book of poems with explanations. It is called Understanding: poems with explanations and is available for purchase as an eBook for an available price of $0.99. If you like poems with explanations and like to support writers whose work you enjoy, then consider purchasing a copy today.