Poetry Friday: “Dark and Late” by Catherine Abbey Hodges

Poetry Friday is hosted by: Tabatha Yeatts: The Opposite of Indifference

Every house we’ve owned has always had a front porch, it’s my one “must have” requirement.  And every porch of every house has always become the center of family life, from the first coat free day of early Spring to the last coat free day of late Fall.  So, it was no wonder that I fell in love with this poem by Catherine Abbey Hodges:

“Dark and Late” by Catherine Abbey Hodges

This dark porch
has brimmed
with light
like a bowl with water
like a throat with laughter

afternoons of light
years of afternoons
scintillating dawns
flagrant noons
underwater-green dusks

and nights
dark and late
lit by candles, hands,
eyes with the leap
that’s the life
we’ve come for,
what we carry
down the spill of years,
what carries us, what
meets us in the end
and on the way
in each other.


17 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: “Dark and Late” by Catherine Abbey Hodges

  1. Tucked this one away in a favorite poem file when I read it on Writer’s Almanac recently. Loved reading it again and thinking about your life on porches. We haven’t had a true porch since our first home more than 30 years ago. I loved the porch swing by the front door.

  2. I’ve loved all our porches, and mine now is so fine to sit upon and watch and laugh and “be”. Beautiful, Tara, and the inclusions of time is so right, but this description is one I would never think of, but fabulous: “underwater-green dusks”.

  3. I do love porches! This time of year we eat out on our back porch (deck) every meal. 🙂 Your post also reminds me of some great revision advice for poets: cut off the front porch. Often our first lines aren’t even necessary, and are just us figuring things out. One quick way to improve a poem is to cut off the front porch! xo

  4. This made me feel nostalgic for all those years, all that laughter (even though it is the narrator’s years and laughter!). Like Linda, I was struck by “underwater-green dusks.”

  5. Tara, we just had to redo my front entrance because of the winter’s harsh abuse of its solid frame. I am happy to say that I am in love with the new creation and decided to take the chair away to admire its beauty. Years of looking over the neighborhood from my front entrance comes back to me after reading this poem. Beautiful thought:
    what we carry
    down the spill of years,

  6. Thanks for the introduction to Catherine Abbey Hodges’ poem, Tara. I haven’t lived in a house with a porch, just covered entryways, but maybe someday I will and I will think of this poem. =)

  7. I was just eying the ferns that have shown up outside the grocery store entrance and wondering if a few of those would provide enough screening from the fairly busy street out front so that we could use our porch more…

  8. Thank you, Tabatha and all! I’m very happy to know that “Dark and Late” resonates with you–it’s an affirmation and delight when a poem finds its way to its readers. This one’s from my book Instead of Sadness, out from Gunpowder Press in 2015. Tabatha, you must have met it on The Writer’s Almanac?

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