Friday, September 30, 2005

Love Notes of September

Nature surrounds all lovers. Leaves start to fall. It’s a love affair with life—
of sight and heart, hills and forest. Joy is the height of anticipation.

In the light
of wood-green hue
and the sun of lovers’ rite
maple trees release first leaves.
Birch, ash, and oak
join the fun, each one
by one,
two and three—
love notes from trees to earth—
take courage, dive
and gentle
Light with sound.

The clock of earth talks
from forest wall,
Tick, if dry. Tok, if not.
One word for each is heard—
Tis-kit; Tok-ut—
and a thousand silent thoughts
collected in sky’s basket,
memories of ancestors seasons past,
cousins hugging earth
in air-light bed,
anticipation of sisters still
clinging to the branch.
Skydivers inner cry
in free-fall of love
at autumn’s celebration just ahead,
as a million-fold
applause and screams sound
from the jump seats
in the wind.

Still green shows peace,
this circus tent.
Yet daring sprigs capture
in yellow-fire torch
sunlight more precious everyday
before most notes sent
tumbling out to play—
flyers of the trapeze to please
wild grape, Virginia Creeper
forever climbing in the bleachers.
Stars shed by wind
and earth’s attraction
whirl and whip to train the beast
of mind’s attention.

Orange and red replace
the color of spring,
and summer’s dance.
Love notes, sheet music
light on earth before
winter’s down comforter
lies, too, with love
on this forest floor.
Earth color to remember:
green, yellow, orange and red.
Love notes of September
make up each lover’s bed.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

washes the darkness

The random order in chaos, catastrophe, anguish—and its aftermath—sometimes shows through.

washes the darkness

dark yet
there is a peace
in the night ending
energy in the silence
between the lines of clamor
and ambient sounds collapsing
clocks talk to raindrops in the wind
three tones chiming
tin chimney
glaze pane
and deck
peck tick tock
ping ping pock
din dance rock
solid the sound this still dark world
when morning of this day
breaks out in light inside
and flooding white
the page of day
comfort in the still dark song
solace overtakes lonely in
soft light sound washes
clean the darkness
of grief
washes the darkness

Friday, September 23, 2005

The Last Day

On the last day
the angle of sun showed heavy
the growth of seed
and rich tree leaf before the turn
to follow harbingers aflame
in maple branches crimson-gold.
And afternoon gem-jade
—was emerald in the spring—
and olive greens turn white
with wind, advancing clouds—
the front of one last thunder storm.
Bird of wild wing seeks harbor
broadside the arbor forest wall
backdrop by ceiling flashing
bright and black.
Fall now calls the end
to multiplying fast the growth
since solstice is a memory running on
the last day of summer gone.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Dance of the Scythe

Hanging on the peg, standing in the corner of the shed, or laying at the edge of ready field—the scythe called to me. The S-curve of its body, thin and strong like a young athlete, a figure skater that comes alive in the strong hands and able command of a simple and perfect man.

It calls to me, still a boy. Watching Dad’s few strokes in two-step cadence-count through grain by the corner of the shed and metal gate showed me its grace and power. I watched expertise, and knew it too was mine with the scythe of hand and heart. Perfect balance, saber-sharp blade, the mating of handles with hands—man and implement—one, in a labor-love affair. Grass, grain. Clover, or vetch—command of the scythe in harvest of earth’s lush cover. Delight in this, and the beauty of the planets in motion. It was all mine—I knew. Long strokes, thin bite. Draw the tip of the blade right to left, cutting clean, and swing it back so its dull edge re-rights the uncut stand pulled by the previous swing. Pull, backstroke. Pull and back. Clean cut, sharp swath, five foot wide, and back again. Gives more energy then it takes. Stopping only for breaks of admiration and Mom’s lemonade.

The dance of the scythe is a corner of heaven called then by its name on the farm. We called it work. But I knew better. This was love of the dance—the dance of the scythe.


Saturday, September 10, 2005

September Prairie

On the drive through the native rolling prairie of the campus at the
Temple of ECK in Chanhassen, Minnesota, it struck me...

September Prairie

Grasses of the prairie this September
In hues of gold and red, blue and fading
Green to silver-gray.
Seed heads thick and leaning heavily in bough
Each shaft a bow bent in archer’s tension
All set to release the magic of summer’s end.

I glimpse beyond this season, this earth’s thin mantle
Each an attempt to cover yesterday’s mistakes.
But September prairie grass is most sincere.
Even burnt black grows green in Spring.

In an Envelope

There's a lot of poetic fodder moving through. For myself it's most anything with light or sound or feeling. This week a friend sent me a notice of an art show including her work. It took me like an anxious dog on a leash. So I ran with it.
In an Envelope

Came to me in an envelope
Manila yellow with lines
Straight and squiggly
Last one named--was mine
written in the hand of one carefree
in the practice of precision.
String around red button,
floppy and dog-eared.
Woof, woof. Good boy.
I open it up.

Reach in and pull out card stock,
four-color and folded, glossy brochure
of an international flavor.
With my name on it
I peruse the presentation.

Trees and hills and red-roofed monastery
On a river to match the sky
purple backdrop
of distant mountains
all seen through the window
with red pots on its sill
somewhere in Southern Spain.
Can travel there anytime I want.

Notice now a window in the window.
The scene: a mural on a brick wall
painted by an artist who loves
the trees and hills
and the far side of the river.
And painted by the artist who loves
the art and the trees and
the hills and the river
and the mountains
and the mural
and the wall and the window.
Captured by the man with the camera
who loves the artist
of the painting
of the mural.

Sky and mountains and river and hills and trees
and monastery and window sill’s red pots
and window in a window.
Who’s inside the window?

The artist with a ladder
The artist with an easel
The artist with a camera
The brochure of an art show
Inside the yellow manila envelope
With my name on it.
What is your inspiration?
Woof, woof.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

New Depths

Inspired by the English translation of “Agua” via an on-line translator. Not so good to learn the meaning of the original text, but great poetic suggestion. Though I don't know Spanish, the romance of the language comes through.

At surf’s edge I repose in the peace
of your presence where I lost you
know you are here,
yet all I have
is your smile reflecting
in the calm of morning mist
and waves,
your hair flowing
through my hands
I touch my feet
and the sand
gives way beneath them
I go to new depths
of your love.