Annette Snyckers

The Ancestor  

I have often watched you coming up here where the wind blows by the sea. Here where our traces lie buried on the dune. You are a child of our children’s children removed far down the line of life spinning through time. I have watched you again today – how you came with your husband to look for traces of the ancestors. What drives you to walk so far along the beach and to climb so steeply up the dunes where there is nothing but wind and sand?

I saw you scratching around a long-deserted workshop site where stone splinters still litter the ground. I saw your disappointment when you did not find what you were looking for. Down to the beach you went, dragging your feet in the shallow water as you took the long way back home. I called to you then and I saw your confusion when you told your husband to carry on while you turned back up another dune.

After I had lost the arrowhead so meticulously shaped by my father, I was in a great deal of trouble. Last night’s storm finally blew away the last layers of sand under which it had lain buried for millennia. I could see it now, but my disembodiment did not allow me to retrieve it, to make good to my father. So I called to you and you heard although I could see that you did not understand when you found it perfect, exposed on the side of the dune. I saw fear on your face and fascination as you reached out to pick it up.

I saw you clasping it tightly in your hand as you ran down the dune. I saw fire in your eyes. I saw your husband turn pale when you opened your hand to show him your treasure.

Annette Snyckers

Longing by Ttynnare Kneecss
(A poem in the free Trectistic form)

I feel alone
among people running to and fro –
however, I long for that place in the fynbos

where I hear
only the waves and the birds —
languidly sighing the sea, songs in the Milkwoods below.

But I know
even there, summer is almost over.
Presently winter’s rain will sift over the city again.

Annette Snyckers

Wabi Sabi Summer by Ttynnare Kneecss
(A poem in the Paradelle form)

Lilac Agapanthus felled by hot winds,
Lilac Agapanthus felled by hot winds,
Hydrangeas are faded, pastel.
Hydrangeas are faded, pastel.
By hot winds faded, felled,
Hydrangeas pastel, Agapanthus lilac.

Scorched leaves of high summer,
Scorched leaves of high summer,
ferns flattened in a bed of bronze.
ferns flattened in a bed of bronze.
High summer scorched of leaves,
in a bed of bronze ferns flattened.

Tree skeleton stands stark,
Tree skeleton stands stark,
dead needles, detritus of death.
dead needles, detritus of death.
Tree death, stark skeleton,
detritus of dead needles.

Faded Hydrangeas flattened by stark winds,
detritus of leaves, bronze needles.
High in a tree stands the
scorched skeleton of death.
Ferns felled, Agapanthus dead pastel,
hot bed of lilac summer.

Annette Snyckers

Capitulation by Ttynnare Kneecss
(A ‘Drabble’ of exactly 100 words)

It was already February and she was running – still trying to catch up with last year. She noticed how the bracken lay bronzed and flattened by the heat. Things happen so fast. You wish for them, but then they rush forward and slip from your grip! She had so much planned for this summer, but it turned out differently. Now she felt wilted and worn out, the freshness of her expectations faded like the limp hydrangeas drained of their colour. She sat down under the big oak, ready to quit the race – then lay back in the shade and stretched.