Oddments

In search of story


6 Comments

December 7.21: Coping

Who said the moon is cheese?

Why, anyone can see

the moon is made of paper,

thick and cottony.

Someone tore it gently

in swooping deckled arc,

sculpting it to give me

a wink against the dark.

 

Dear reader,

This is not the perfect photo

about which I can boast;

the window I took aim through

added flourish of moon ghost.

But nighttime in the winter

I prefer being warm to bold;

it isn’t only dark out there,

it’s finger-nipping cold!

 

This is another one that, despite its length, makes me want to append “Burma-Shave!”

 

 


7 Comments

November 18.21: Coping

I’m lonely;

I’ll make me a world,

God said.

Now comes the echo,

in winter wind

— loneliest sound —

that lifts dead leaves

like empty chalices,

a last offering

before ice that freezes

even loneliness,

and the moldering carpet

woven by the wind

becomes blanket

for wiggly unseens.

And yet

I’m lonely

lingers:

each of us,

after all,

only one.

 

With thanks to James Weldon Johnson for his poem “The Creation,”

and to the anonymous student

in a high school speech meet many years ago

who put it in my head.

 


16 Comments

November 10.21: Coping

How it sizzles,

this maple,

brazen in the sunset,

each blazing leaf

a crackle

like the fire in a hearth

spitting embers,

bodaciously sassing the sun.

 

 

A note, dear reader: many years ago, oh, so many, I was advised never to use a series of sibilant sounds. Which, as you can tell, is a rule that doesn’t take itself too seriously. I thought of it as I wrote that last line and reveled in my rebellion. It sounds like a leaky tire, but I like it.

 

 


7 Comments

October 13.21: Coping

R-e-v-e-n-g-e!

This is gardener’s smuggery:

hoorah of zinnia frillery

despite cotton-tailed skullduggery.

 

(Apologies to Aretha.)

Yes, dear reader, this is that poor chomped zinnia that I mourned a while back. It recovered and set itself to showing those rabbits a thing or two about resolve. I might not have the zinnia patch I’d planned and dreamed of last March, but I sure got a brilliant pink sneer at the rabbits.


13 Comments

October 11.21: Coping

In the worn path of the daily

I walked. Bedroom to kitchen,

like yesterday and the day before,

when,

in this moment of the ordinary,

something,

some clanging silence,

stopped me,

stopped my breath.

Under pallid sky

as tired leaves let go their holds

on life,

spring!

Four years have we lived together,

this lilac and I,

but never a flower

until now,

this discouraged, bleak Now.

What forced its bloom?

Anger? Fear? Despair?

Why spring

on the doorstep of winter?

Is this tender-petal’d spire

telling me that

maybe

I don’t know everything?

 

 


8 Comments

September 30.21: Coping

I knew a kid

or maybe two

who combed his hair

in such a ‘do,

flat-top or brush

or sometimes crew,

(it was the fifties,

as you probably knew).

But maybe it’s sculpted

more to my eye

like the perfect meringue

on Mom’s lemon pie.

Or could it be

a lamb crown roast?

A woolly anvil?

Chambered ghost?

There’s something grand

about a cloud

that makes us stop

and muse aloud

what can it be?

what dreams inside?

how’d it do that?

can I hitch a ride?