Friday, March 22, 2019

To Bryant's Fountain

“…shall the veins that feed thy constant stream  be choked in middle earth, and flow no more forever, that the water-plants along thy channel perish, and the bird in vain alight to drink?”  (from The Fountain by William Cullen Bryant)

What feelings has a fountain stilled
by overgrowth of moss and twigs?
Your silenced waters trod to dust
by the endless marching years.

The twisting thicket pushes hard
against your stony face; leafy
lances penetrate your walls. Wrens
pass without a pause to rest.

What history lies sleeping, deep
within your heart…unreachable
through the thorns and tangled ivy?
What native brave slaked his thirst

with your cold water, ere it turned
red with conquered’s blood or stain
of  autumn rust? But you, storm splashed
soon washed crystal clear again.

For years wheat fields stood by your side
and children tossed their pennies in
to make a wish come true, ruddy cheeks
glistening with sun and youth.

Then, when the farmer’s time was done,
the sportsman hunted and wandered
through September’s noon, but even
hunters hang up their muskets.

The brave surrendered native land;
the child has grown into a man
and all the men have been called home.
Now you alone remain here.

We pass by and pause to wonder
what dreams hide in a fountain’s heart
when the water has departed
and the ancient tears have dried.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Tolkien's Middle Ear

O, Tolkien, did you think
of Middle Ear
and all that happens there?
The trysts between the malleus,
incus, stapes and the brain, the ring --
you know the one
that drives a man insane --
a trilogy of senses intertwined.

What did you know
of the Eustachian tube?
Will you map it for us with your worthy pen?
Perhaps invoke a tuning fork
so we will better understand why in March
when snow still frosts the ground,
we hear a robin sing
and join hands
to welcome Sprng.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Pearls and Platitudes

Good men are not made by law,
Nor wise men made by books,
Beauty is an attribute
That's sometimes matched
with looks.
Love is such a lovely thing,
It makes the time fly by,
But it’s a sad song that we sing
When it's time
that makes love fly.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Getting it Done

February’s last hurrah —
wind rattles through bare limbs.
Birds fluff their feathers
and sing a glad song.

Spring is on its way…
Mother Nature seems to be saying,
Stop labeling me!

There are no compartments
to contain me, not even
on calendar pages

In a monologue
without fences
she blows cold breath.
The meadow waits for April,

Bees wait for flowers,
Back streets bask in neon.
Fake mystics practice levitation
without success

and then there’s poets,
pen in hand they whistle
and write the sun.