Category Archives: poetry

An unexpected drive

I saw the sun sparkle between the leaves

just before the outpouring of red and gold,

that moment of flux when everything is not new.

A bird flock undulated in our view.

A tarnished framework bridge sat to cross over

the creek, a connection between us and there:

A rusty reminder of the history of travels.

How many have driven this dirt road before?

Who else remarked upon the aging of the beams, has seen the streaming

brown water beneath.

The near-autumn sun advanced

upon the field.

An apple orchard in neglect to the left.

Weeds stood in contrast with the trees,

yet, apples continued to ripen and drop throughout the field,

leaving a sustaining memory.

The bird flock returned to a billow and thrum

and I drove on, following a ebbing sun.

Butterfly

There is a flitting butterfly in sight of all the passers-by-

lighting on a broad-leaf, I wish that I could blink and be

a butterfly, like one I see.

What species, then, I couldn’t tell,

the lighting in the field was fell,

but simply with its fleeting swell it caught my eye and cast a spell.

Whether monarch, with its spotted wings

or swallowtail, a colored thing of yellow with perhaps some blue

that sang a presence, then withdrew

to places past where I could see, leaving just my fancy free:

wondering what butterfly I could be.

 

A conversation

I imagine that what comes after must be better than before,

No constant monitoring of the quality, that is to maintain

with manmade artifices,

of  how beautiful or how healthy we are.

For me, it is not to know. I am here.

But for you, there – passed beyond the walls of this world,

it should be filled with the flavors of wine and honey,

the laughter of the loved and lost,

the passage of infinite moments cast

equally of musical crescendo and allargando – and pianissimo.

As for me, I do not know.

I do not know when the brightest stars are going to fade.

Perhaps you can show me someday.

Sitting at your glass table, with coffee and fresh-baked bread

I listen to the rain, instead.

 

 

 

Keepsake

I’ve been sorting through old keepsakes,
some photographs I’ve found are faded now,
these echo sounds of places where I didn’t go – faces that I do not know
I can’t decide how to store them all –
The sepia memories of what you saw,
The air your family stories hold
should last as long as when you told them.
And what you did is what you wanted
To do, and nothing worse hindered you.
Scenes of travel – and songs of yore
Some motets in your mind’s reservoir.
Carols sung in a cavernous forum
were more than just some Ipsem Lorem.
Choirs of men and women singing
Relationships brought into being
How, lovely – snaps you strived to make
No different than our own keepsakes.
But yours dwelled firmly in His grace –
and dwelling in your family’s place
Devotion and hymn live with us here
Led with your baton, and your voice as clear
as when you walked into a room.
My minds-eye sees you, feels you too.
How lovely, this reminiscence sounds –
Even if an echo now.
Listening to you in my head
puts my thoughts to this poem’s thread
of places where the music soars
and you’re step-singing an angel chorus.
The keepsakes of your melody in harmony with the little things,
And now they’re ours, for all to sing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

In a moment of selective focus

Seeing narrow and close

the fresh rain that hangs like tears

from a florid pome and blurred green surrounds it.

The pinnacle of small details – the tip of a pen pressed

at the page or the placed dish inlaid with memories.

The indentions of your slow intake of breath fills me as you read

the texture from a leather-bound book.

Obsession takes a toll, roughshod over the global view

of landscape and horizon. Still and fixed,

the single moment aches in a story with pain

and the point that tarries after a kiss in the foreground, surrounded by rain.

***

Sometimes unusual wins

Wiping my soles of a green gradoo,

Wishing for catenate rhymes to accrue.

Columnar phrases we whisper at night,

Jointing and cooling, crackling on sight.

Opening comments come up the next day

Out of our comfort, then die away.

Though smiled in response, your eyes will avert

Gathering mettle you hoped to assert.

I’m always hopeful for those might-have-beens,

But with the gradoo, the unusual wins.

*****

Picture by me: basalt formations from The Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland, March 2019

Gradoo = cajun slang for “stuff you scrape off your shoe.” Also, a delicious side dish with spinach, onions, cheese, and garlic.