Waiting at the Window (an Ekphrastic poem)

An ekphrastic poem is one in which the poet describes a scene or, more often, a piece of art. In this case, I chose to relate in my own words the painting “Frau am Fenster” by Casper David Friedrich.


At her window she stands,

Watching, waiting.

Night and day pass

Like ships on the sea.

But from her place

She never dares venture.

“Mein mann, mein mann,”

She whispers into the glass.

Her dress, the color of jade, hangs

Limp against her anxious frame.

A mass of brown locks sits

Atop her crown in practiced reverence.

“Mein mann, mein mann,”

She whispers again,

A stoic army of trees

Her only audience.

The dirt-stained walls close in

Around her rail-thin body,

Encasing her in a domestic

Prison of solitude.

It is in this place she remains,

Her shoed feet glued to the floor planks.

Another lonely minute passes

Before this waiting woman.


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