Band Member

Signing up with the Sargent 
audition unrehearsed
first chair potential

the score, peppered with notes
unwarranted, unanswered, unsent

and I, virtuoso in
a minor key
play
plucking my heart
con dolore

transmuting
pain to melody
oxidation to harmony
and regret to

solo

 

This is for dVerse where we were asked to write  a Quadrille (44 words, including title) including some form of the word, “pepper” in honor of the anniversary of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Lost

cardiff
Photo by Mary Bach: Merchant Seafarers’ War Memorial (back side), Cardiff

 

Where are we?
Blinded and betrayed by time
 
Endless skies press down
with the weight of water
 
Sanded and salted
preserved, we thought
 
Like a pearl of great price
I am lamented but unfound
 
scattered, until my ribs
no longer know each other

Weather Report

It’s grey today, and drizzling
inside my head
clouds gather behind my eyes

Outside the sun is burning
stars are turning
and the world hurtles
on

Looking out the window
I see only the fog
of my breath,
condensed

Then, without warning,
I storm

This is a Quadrille, or a poem of exactly 44 words for dVerse Poets’ Pub.  And Mish has asked us to include some form of the word, “drizzle.”

The Road Outside My Door

Today I drive fast
through the cold, overcast morning.
I’ve traveled this highway many times
know the blind curve
before Hansen’s driveway
and watch for draft horses
pulling the cultivator
as I approach Krueger’s.

Spring fields
are just beginning to show
a chartreuse sheen
but I have seen them palest yellow
burnished gold
lavish green
and a dozen shades from white to grey
beneath the snow,
or glistening deep, black in the rain
or so dry that dust clouds
follow tractors down the rows.
Dutch Crick runs parallel on the west
Some years it swells from spring rains
so the waters push up out of their banks
and over the fields
impatient to reach the valley’s end
like me.

Along the side of the road
I have seen dead deer, cats, coons
possums, fox, birds
and one live dog
who now makes his home with me.
Today turkey vultures gather,
like congress,
shoulder to shoulder
in a nearby field
greedy to get all they can,
like congress.

In January, bald eagles light
in the oak trees at the edge of the road
across from Sandman’s farm;
I’ve counted as many as seven.
Wild turkeys dot the side-hills in spring
too many to count
so we have hunting seasons for them.

There are mornings
when the ground fog nestles in the valley
and I drive up and out
into the dazzling sun of a different day.
In fall when the leaves turn
brown, yellow, orange
of oak, birch, maple
and I smell the wood smoke
rising from farmhouse chimneys
I count these days precious.

Coming home in the afternoons
waiting behind the school bus
I wave to the children
who wave to me
through the back window.
Butch drives the bus
haltingly
through the valley
depositing each child
at his rightful place
along the road.

At night warm light
from each farmhouse along the way
punctuates the dark
marks a home, a family, a circle of souls
that call to me;
yet, there have been winter nights
when the full moon
has shown so brightly on the snow
I have turned off my headlights
and driven through the valley
drawn out to 
solitude.

As I race down Highway 162
from between its lines
tucked and twisted through the hills
I recall the thousand faces
this road has shown me
through different times and seasons
and I slow down to look
for it will never be just this way again.