Monthly Archives: December 2016

A question, in advance

It sings itself, doesn’t it?
the song about love and hope-
the one about couples, and snowfall and candles
familiar lyrics and trope.

Each verse is a longing
request for addition
with vocalese twinges
that wear down, by detrition,
the crag and stone hindrances
built by decision.

Until, yes, the endgame –
the paramount question
asked with charm and sorcery
with little regard for others
just you and me –

Will you dance inside the phrases
and read my poetry?
Hold my hand firmly
as you focus and you breathe?

Can you imagine, here, set free?

*******
The song “What are you doing New Year’s Eve” was running through my mind this morning, and I wrote this as an accompaniment to the song. A tribute to the muse and love in general, I suppose. Wishing you all the best in 2017.

A Christmas Card

Paper greetings, printed in opaque black,
swirled with ochre tones – and embossed
with tinsel and glare.

The serenity of straw and stable,
low station and artless beginnings-
in the midst of majestic creations.

Or how the mystery of snowfall
obscures the road ahead, yet in stillness
illustrates continuum beauty where we are led.

The green wreath, the evergreen bough-
decked in ribbon – tinged with gold
and captures glimmer and snow alike, somehow.

See the carolers, their faces
reddened in winter’s callous air –
mouths agape with our imagined joyful song and prayer.

In the bleak midwinter,
Snow lay all around, stars shown bright-
then pealed the bells more loud and clear,
Merry Christmas, Noel, this silent night.

eau

a fragrant voice,
a merging sound
to gather yellow, red and crowned

in a glottal stop
between the soundings
of the clock.

in a fashion, step
betwixt the puddle
stones and ripples, mixed.

lovers with their grasping hands-
arose, then reached at its command
and cleaved the blood-pricked
thorn, alone

in silence
and in clamored tones.

Concomitant

There is a slight twinkle
near the sun, and it brings a magic notion
down to one. There is a water droplet
near the stream, and it doesn’t bother
or even seem to care if it’s apart-
the teeming, rushing flow reprieves.
A single green leaf among the red and golden sheaves
and fading starlight, tropes in morning dark.
Waving grasses, stand in endless fields
beneath the doleful skies of clouds with daylight, now concealed.
Wisps of raven hair that battle with the breeze,
as eyes (that smile) seek out the day’s reprise.
And this, a thought to consort with the one,
the charm that twinkled with the sun.

 

May to December: A Letter Poem

Dear Celia,

The weather has turned again, with its gray entrenchments.

Every day seems slightly more bitter than the next, with little room for sunlight and warm touches. I keep the shutters closed most days just to keep out the appearance of cold. The warm hearth remains at the center of the house, and I do my best to remain within sight of it.

I can’t believe it has been almost a decade since I last saw you. Time passes so fluidly now that I don’t even realize the change from May to December – except for the pause that is Autumn. That is the time of moving through color, going from green to gray. The gray seems to last longer. It is no wonder we decorate our homes with pine and cedar this time of year. It helps maintain the illusion that time has stopped during moments of growth that seem perpetual. Autumn gives us a different clock. One with an altering view each day – a changing red, a subtle orange or yellow.

I grew tomatoes again over the summer, and contrary to last year’s harvest, this one was quite poor. The temperatures seem cool enough, though rain was lacking during the middle of the year. I did my best to keep the plants watered, and they remained green and grew quite large, but just did not yield much fruit. All of the flowers in the garden seemed to do well, though, providing a beautiful flourish of roses, irises, jonquils, daisies, and tulips at different times.

It is funny (peculiar) that I should remember you most at this time of year. I suppose that it is because the transition part of life provides the most vibrant backdrop. I must now close this letter, and I wish you the best for the coming year. It is likely I’ll revisit these memories again in the future. The demands of life require a sanctuary. I find it comforting, like the hearth, and I do my best to remain within sight of it.

All the best,
John