She needs to believe
in magic routes and jungle paths
wants full growth and roots piercing unshrivelled
a flash of silver on the Little Prince’s fox
being singled out as the most important being
to one other
music celestial or otherwise to braid into her hair
colours to skip to in early morning shimmer
words to gurgle out with mischief.

He deals in numbers
facts and proofs
and probabilities will show
that nothing stays untarnished
he can prove with simple laws
of gravity and rationality
that the weight of the world cannot
lie on her shoulders
so he need never lift a finger
to share a non-existent burden.


I am linking this to my wonderful poetic home, the Open Link Night at dVerse Poets Pub. Join me there for many poems and poets of note!

22 thoughts on “Contrasts”

  1. Could you write the same poem with he and she swapped? Why, why not? This poem smells too much of gender stereotype for comfort.

    1. You are right of course and I wish I could say that I have experienced it differently, beyond gender stereotypes. But unfortunately this is a very personal poem and I just needed to write out some frustrations in a first draft. If I were to revise it, I might consider changing quite a lot of things, including the he/she.

  2. Regarding comment by bf: It’s possible for the roles to be swopped. I here think of the marriage of my parents. I’ve stayed single to avoid this trap of doing the suppressing or being oppressed. We all tell our stories according to our experience. The poem is relevant and well written.

    1. Thank you for your comments. Yes, I think my parents’ marriage was somewhat the reverse, but it’s always interesting when two very different worldviews collide.

  3. What an effective way to show the contrast in the way people think, Marina Sofia! I even catch the hint of ache as each wishes to reach the other. Beautifully done!

  4. so he need never lift a finger
    to share a non-existent burden

    If only he can be more compromising to the needs of both, so that he can be an ideal companion. Things can well work better!


  5. I like how you portrayed two people with different perspectives in life ~ There needs to be a compromise or middle ground, I think ~

  6. That closing line left me feeling cold. There are some people who refuse to compromise and meet in the middle. So then we are left with our choices…

  7. “so he need never lift a finger
    to share a non-existent burden”

    That’s an amazing contrast – that came to life in your words.

  8. I can somewhat relate to this, it’s frustrating to have these contrasts and seemingly imcompatible approaches to life, yet still absolutely adore someone. It does boil down to needs, and validating a need even if we don’t percieve it to be a justifiable one.

  9. This poem speaks of the differences in people, from people seeing life from two different perspectives. The last two lines are painful to read. I hope that both can find a middle ground, and he will be willing to share some of the burden.

  10. Two world views interwoven have finally, in my third marriage, brought me the growth, & joy missing in the others; he said–she said, he is–she is, they are. I like the lines /to braid into her hair/colours to skip to in early morning shimmer/.

  11. Ah.. hemispheres of earth
    of mind.. of Universe above
    below.. inside us.. outside
    us.. and all around us..
    as fractal of all
    that is..
    and some
    live half and half
    and others live
    as whole..
    and all the spectrum
    ‘tween.. but cold
    logic.. alone..
    is no beer
    for me..
    Dreams are
    real wheRe
    i for one will stay in
    the Avatar Jungle and that
    my friend.. is where your
    words take me for now..:)

  12. Oh that traffic contrast between hope and cold logic. Wonderful contrast in this. I feel sorry for the lady who needs to believe…stick with the one who only calculates.

  13. Unfortunately , there is no gender stereotype in this, only reality of how things still are in many marriages. Wonderful contrast between the two. The last two lines brought much sadness.

  14. What a wonderful use of contrasts in both the poem and the images you chose to emphasize your message. I especially loved the reference to The Little Prince–my favorite book in French (and English). Very affective and effective!

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