Sonnet for an unnameable emotion

Far easier to say what it is not! 
It is not fear, nor apprehension bleak;
Anxiety is likewise term unsought;
Too negative those words all sound to speak.
Pain fills the gap between what is and what
Is wanted. I am open, free of need,
Held unattached to any outcome but
Still hopeful for the sprouting of the seed.
If staring at the edge of the unknown
Is standing on a cliff debating depth,
Uncertainty of fate I hold alone
As company to take that plunging step.
I feel as though I'm screaming without breath,
Embracing change as life, and stasis, death.
-Elena Nola

The Alchemist

This poem is one of my favorite things I’ve ever written. It’s a perfect form Petrarchan sonnet, and a poem that was adapted into that form from free-verse after I realized I had written 15 lines in something approaching iambic pentameter and with a very obvious question/answer.

It was originally published in Riddled with Arrows issue 2.3, Objects and Artifacts, in November 2018.

“The Alchemist”

No pointed hat nor sweeping robe required,
Nor lonely lamp-lit tower stabbing sky.
No pedant’s cant, archaic chant to ply,
Nor pestles filled with mortared coal expired.
The iron discipline of midnight fires
And winding dark roads walked alone, though, aye;
Unflinching yen to face the truth of why,
And burning will to manifest desires.
All I need for alchemy is my quill
And paper blank. I dip it in my vein
Of sorrow, let my sadness over-spill,
Transmuting into words my darkest pain.
A minor compensation for my ills,
To pages, not my soul, leave thusly stained.

-Elena Nola