Albrecht’s Lament

Albrecht Dürer’s portrait of Oswalt Krel, 1499

Until the day I die,
I’ll never forget those glassy,
Unblinking eyes.
In an instant
I could see
that I was known to you.
In an instant
I had shared my fate.

That moment –
That moment when you
Looked into my soul –
You saw it all,
Saw more than I had ever known,
And I, looking at you,
I finally saw it all, too,
Reflected back at me:

My past,
A past of twists and turns and shadows;
My present,
The tormented earth slipping past my moving feet;
My future,
A path into the unknown, disappearing between the trees.

It was all there
In your eyes.
In your eyes,
I saw my eyes
And beyond;
I saw all the way to the end.

Until the day I die,
I’ll never forget those glassy,
Unblinking eyes.
Like the glow
Of two embers in the night
Before they sputter,
Brightening for a moment,
And then fade out,
Leaving a softly shadowed darkness,
Leaving temptation
And too many questions.


Written for the Speakeasy #162 at Yeah Write. Click on the above badge to see the details of the prompt, the rules of the challenge and to participate.


27 thoughts on “Albrecht’s Lament

  1. I wrote a piece but I have no patience and put it on my blog. I did use your prompt. Give it a read and give me a yeah or nay. I enjoyed it.

    • Thanks, Janna. And yes, I think the questions the speaker is left with have to do more with their experience with the other person, and their own internal struggles as well.

  2. I love this so much. I generally don’t have much patience for poetry for some reason, but I keep reading this over and over. And that picture is so perfect with it!

    • That is such a HUGE compliment! Thank you so much, Christin. I know what you mean about poetry; I find that if I’m in the right frame of mind, I can write it fairly easily, but reading it is a whole other thing. Funny thing about the picture is that, although it was part of the prompt, I had written much of the poem before I even saw it.

    • Thanks Suzanne! I was just replying to Christin that I had actually written much of the poem before the prompt was even posted. But when I saw the painting and read the line, it all just fit!

    • Oh thank you! I had something else about the tormented earth and it didn’t fit. This just came to me out of the blue. I’m glad you like it.

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