Somehow had never visited the Green Mountain State, but spent the past week there giving lectures and touring around. Oh my how beautiful! Re this poem that emerged from a sojourn alongside Morey Lake.
Low hills mirrored in water like glass.
A cloud sliver paces its twin.
Swallows swerve for bugs, their paired reflections swimming,
brush strokes that underscore the otherwise limpid calm.
Dawns on me that the day may soon come when central Virginia will see a winter without snow, and then another, and then before long snowy days will have become just a memory for us to bore our grandkids with. I’m going to make a hot chocolate, pull a chair up to the window, and, with our pup Buddy at my side, attend.
Sharing, too, a couple snowy day poems, the first by me, the second by Sarah Knorr, who loved snowy days so much. If you’ve written one, please comment back with it – let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!
Just a quick announcement this morning in thanks to the tireless and intrepid editors at the online multi-media journal Mad Swirl. Earlier this week, they kindly featured my poem Mementos, and I learned just now that they have also accepted and posted a new series of black and white photos on their arts board as well.
This journal means a lot to me. They consistently share work emerging outside the shielded walls of academia by artists with hearts and sharp eyes, and clearly, for them it’s all about the love. Swirl on, mad ones, and thank you!
ps – Here’s a link to a recent printed “best of” anthology – have a flash fiction piece in there!
Our son Nick, an ocean rescue lifeguard in Nags Head, NC, was vaccinated in May but this month came down with breakthrough covid, and quarantined with his gf, also a lifeguard and vaccinated and sick, at the beach. They’re okay now, back in town. He said they hunkered down indoors, ordered out, played video games, and only ventured outside one night late for a walk. Sentimental dad goes….
In our masks we hold hands bare feet splashed in the sand still warm all these hours after sunset.
The 8th of our 10 days sequestered. Our first outside but late.
Whenever the hospitals normalize and the masks come off
it will be this squish of sand, the sea wash, that wagging finger of moonlight tracking our solitary stroll…
If we are among the lucky and why not? Or wherever you may be, I know I’ll say but still, there was that night
when we both were feeling better that pinned it all.
Buddy splashing in the creek behind our house turns up an arrowhead stubby quartz chipped to fit a twig pierce a buck’s tawny hide.
There that maw in the hillside where some ancestor mined for gold. Rusted wire in the woods where sheep grazed in the day.
I went home to say goodbye to my brother who lay dying in our late parents’ bedroom couldn’t take it had to go outside and poking around in the back field where we’d raised chickens once kicked up a rotten bucket a corroded canister what’s this?
So here I am at ten this July day swatting shuttlecocks with him taking turns churning the salt and ice packed peaches and cream until our father dips a finger licks the custard spits disgusted. The can had leaked. See him set himself to hurl the whole kit and caboodle over the back fence. (Mama opens a bag of Oreos.)
Well, here the moment lay weed sewn and half buried in the red earth even that hand crank that had chafed my knuckles on its side.
In Virginia sometimes to stretch our legs we wander Civil War battlefields visualize for instance how close the farm boys crouched facing off like carnival ducks at Cold Harbor. Once in a while you’ll see an old man in earphones divining the lawn with his wand in search of a minie ball a button some more than storied proof of one episode on this or that ageless acre.
And the night Mama died. She’d been in coma for weeks at the nursing home in Fork Union built on the farm where she was born. I left there in tears before dawn stopped short in the parking lot by a herd of cows chewing cud among the cars a film overlay made of now and then as if they’d wandered up from childhood to low her on.
Buddy cocks his head to wonder why I linger in the ankle deep stream with this little shard of quartz. He doesn’t care that we live in a lap dissolve, flies in amber that is only sugar melting.
The point at which receding parallel lines seen in linear perspective seem to meet.
An article on a new book of photography in this morning’s Washington Post sent me down this rabbit hole! Here’s the article.