Actions

Work Header

Twelve Questing Pieces

Work Text:

TITLE & PRÉCIS --
(written as a FIBONACCI SEQUENCE poem: multiple-line verse based on the Fibonacci Sequence so that the number of syllables in each line equals the total number of syllables in the preceding two lines)

In
which
Ray and
Fraser go
in search of the Hand
of Franklin, finding adventure
and danger, sharing stories and struggles, sex and love.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY ONE -- RAY YAMMERS ON ABOUT FRANKLIN’S HAND
(written as a RISPETTO poem: one stanza of eight eleven-syllable lines, with an ababccdd rhyme scheme)

City fit and a lot to say about it,
not yet Arctic fit and saying even more.
Ski a bit, "sled-sit" a bit -- not gonna quit.
Ray is talking more than Fraser with his lore.
Ray keeps talking about the reach of that hand,
at first doesn’t get it, but then understands.
Ray in the wilderness will be like that too --
when it’s his heart that talks, he’ll know what to do.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY TWO -- FRASER TELLS A FAIRY STORY
(written as an ALPHABETICAL poem: words arranged in alphabetical order)

Arctic blasts, cold descending.
Eventually Fraser grants his Inuit-tale’s
just kajjaarinngitait,
laird-tale more nightworthy,
offering prose quelling Ray’s storm terrors…
until very warm xxx’s yield zzz’s.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY THREE -- RAY GETS SHAFTED
(written as a NONET poem: nine lines having nine syllables in the first line and subtracting a syllable per line down to one syllable in the ninth line)

enough room at the top for Ray to
drop through and down and down -- and stop
where it narrowed -- tight and cold
and colder -- then hearing
Dief barking, Fraser
calling, calling
Ray! Ray! Ray!
reaching
out

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY FOUR -- RAY TELLS A CREEPY CAR STORY
(written as a KATAUTA SEDOKA poem: a pair of unrhymed three-line stanzas having a 5-7-7 syllable count each, one stanza being a statement and the other stanza being a question related to that statement)

Ray’s czarna Wolga:
a modern fairy tale or
a modern horror story?

Either way, it turned
out to be the prelude to
Fraser’s freaky subtle kiss.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY FIVE -- RAY FAILS AT HUNTING GROUSES
(written as a LAI poem: a nine-line stanza with an aabaabaab rhyme scheme wherein the “a” lines have five syllables and the “b” lines have two syllables)

Ptarmigan abound,
a protein source found,
a treat.
Follow birds around,
knock birds to the ground,
then eat.
Fraser throws stones 'round.
Ray won’t shoot birds down:
discreet.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY SIX -- CHANGE OF PLANS AND OTHER DRAMAS
(written as an ITALIAN SONNET poem: an eight-line stanza with an abbaabba rhyme scheme, followed by a six-line stanza with an abcabc rhyme scheme)

Something about the hazy northern light
was having an effect on Ray --
confused as to change of direction in the glare of the day,
and when Fraser dissembled, Ray took it as a slight.
Fraser would bravely face personal danger to maintain the right,
but when personal emotions should hold sway
he was inclined to back away
(and to chasten Dief for being impolite).

When Ray realized and accepted that they were turning around
he asked “From Inuvik, what happens then?”
but he thought he knew the answer:
Fraser would get himself posted way north of any town
and Ray would go due south again
to footprints marked on the floor for a solo dancer.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY SEVEN -- FRASER JUST CAN’T RESIST THOSE OLD INUIT TALES
(written as a NOVELINEE SEQUENCE poem: a nine-line stanza with an ababcdcdd rhyme scheme and with the last line of the stanza being a variation on the first line of the stanza)

It began with the night and a myth and a legend.
It began with an Inuit tale
of three brothers who ascend
a mountain to kill a monster…and two fail.
Then came the Inuit tale of Kunik the bear
and the old woman who loved him and feared for his plight,
so sent him away when told “Kunik is in danger! Beware!”
Ray asked the meaning of the name of the bear who took flight
and that led from myth to legend to a nuzzle in the night.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY EIGHT – GOOD CLEAN FUN AT THE SWEAT LODGE
(written as a HAIBUN poem: a form that is a pairing of a prose poem together with a haiku – the haiku is written in typical haiku style of three lines where the first line is five syllables, the second line is seven syllables, and the third line is again five syllables, and the prose poem is one which describes a scene or moment in time -- and between the prose poem and the haiku there is a thematic connection)

There is the sweat lodge – it represents the inner world. There is the mound of earth just outside the sweat lodge; there is the fire pit just outside the sweat lodge; there is the circle drawn around the fire pit just outside the sweat lodge. There is the mound of earth – it represents the planet earth; there is the fire pit – it represents the sun; there is the drawn circle – it represents the moon. There is the sweat lodge – it represents the inner world, and as one emerges from the lodge, emerging from the hot dark to the cool light, it is likened to being born anew.

These two men enter
the sweat lodge; these men emerge
and they enter love.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY NINE -- EVERYBODY GETS SOME, EVEN WOLVES
(written as an AUBADE poem: thematically always an ode to morning itself or a love poem of lovers in the morning or a nature poem with a morning setting)

Hark now
Bark now
Half-wolf yip
The night before Dief gave them the slip
When comes the morning, everyone has come
Man or wolf, everybody gets some
Morning light
Morning bright
All species of lovers have cause for delight
The arctic morning is cold but morning love is hot
Getting some is what man and wolf got

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

STORY TEN – FRASER MAKES LIKE HUMPTY DUMPTY
(written in the style of the NURSERY RHYME poem on which the chapter title is based: a single quatrain with an aabb rhyme scheme and a meter consisting of alternating stressed and unstressed syllables)

Benton Fraser slipped down a slope –
Rescue by Ray was his one hope.
After Gordon the trucker gave them a ride,
The helicopter got them safely inside.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

EPILOGUE --
(written as a DECASTICH poem: a free-verse form consisting of either a single stanza of exactly ten lines or multiple free-verse stanzas of exactly ten lines each)

There was this quest
said to be in search of a lost expedition.
There was this quest
which spoke of that expedition
as trying to trace one warm line.
There was this quest
where a different kind of warm line
connected
these two men,
these partners in every way.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~
~*~ ~*~ ~*~