Poem a Day 2013 #25: Dance into the Light

Poem number 25.

I’m lucky to live within walking distance of Urrbrae House and its beautiful rose gardens, labyrinth, walking paths and sculptures. Doing ‘poem a day’ is an almost Buddhist experience. It makes you pay attention, to look for ideas, for inspiration. Today, I walked to Urrbrae House (my phonecam pic below) and stood in front of a sculpture which I’ve never really taken much notice of before. Urrbrae is on the Waite campus of the University of Adelaide. The Waite campus is primarily associated with agricultural research. For instance, they develop and test different strains of wheat. So, the particular sculpture I noticed is of Ceres (my phonecam pic above). Ceres is the goddess of agriculture, grain crops, fertility, motherly relationships and of light.

The plaque reads:

Dance into the Light

Ceres the goddess of light rescues her daughter from the underworld. Spring returns to earth.

Sculptor Meliesa Judge

Liquid Metal Studios

This is my meditation on the sculpture:

Dance into the Light

Light has been sucked from your eyes

by the shadowed frigidity you flee.


You manage a weak smile,

right fist clenched in triumph

for she has been delivered.


Your left hand spreads

your wheaten cloak behind

shielding her from pursuing gloom,

shepherding her towards summer’s relief.


Your left leg kicks a phantom malignancy

like a footballer sweetly hits a volley

or a teenager extravagantly despatches an empty can.


Your daughter skims the ground beside,

all frail, flying, straining ligaments,

arms pleading the power of flight.


Her face a younger yours,

nothing wasted on expression,

no betrayal of the horrors she has seen

in the months of chill despair.

2013-04-25 16.13.53

Vote for “Mistaken for a Real Poet” in Best Australian Blogs 2013:


Copyright Mike Hopkins 2013


11 thoughts on “Poem a Day 2013 #25: Dance into the Light

  1. How’s this for a coincidence? Last weekend, my mum caught up with an old friend who happened to mention her daughter’s sculptures. Mum and I ended up having a look at some photos of her work on the net. Then, today, you posted about a sculpture and the style of the piece looked familiar. I was amazed to then read it was by the very same artist, Meliesa Judge. If you ever wanted the artist to read your poem (which, BTW, I enjoyed), I’d be happy to pass it on via her mum. But only if you want 🙂

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