Passing Memory in the Night
Wind fleeting rushes with the witch through night
Faces pass softly flashing in the tent
Eager hands clasp a weak unsteady light
Flaring wildly after her your flame leant
She lingers to look into eyes which spark
See your burning flame and hear your true name
She loves how you make shift away the dark
Knows that nothing can ever be the same
Flames lively flare to whisper “I am yours”
Waver “Cannot lose you in blinding day”
Turns halo of ginger and blue colours
And under eyes the hazy shadows sway
Their eyes alight through radiances send
Twinkle that all they wished for was a friend
In ‘Passing Memory in the Night,’ the literary device of imagery allows the reader to perceive the sight of the rushing motion of the witch, “eyes which spark,” the colours of ginger and blue in the halo, and faces flashing as they pass. The reader may perceive the sound of the flames’ brief outbursts when they flare to whisper “I am yours.” The reader may perceive the feelings of fleeting wind, eagerness as hands clasp light, and its heat as it burns. The literary device of allusion used in the title and throughout the poem may let the reader recall that Henry Wadsworth Longfellow composed verse with the idea of “ships that pass in the night.” “Their eyes alight through radiances send” is an indirect reference to the idea that people sometimes send meaningful messages by briefly looking at each other’s faces. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow writes, “Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence.” The symbolism in the lines, “Flaring wildly after her your flame leant,” “Faces pass softly flashing in the tent,” and “See your burning flame and hear your true name” might allow the reader to associate flames with the abstract idea of the liveliness of the thoughts and feelings which create the characters of people.
This sonnet is dedicated to a wizard.
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