Posts Tagged birds

Woodworker

I loved trees
I became a woodworker
I loved the ocean
So I drank it
I loved dirt
So I rooted
I loved music
I was quiet

I loved the truth
I spoke up
I loved God
So I knelt
I loved birds
So I flew
I loved wisdom
I said little

I loved the view
I became a mountain
I loved silence
So I hushed
I loved a woman
So I loved her
I loved the Earth
I left it

Alone

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The House of Dying

Here I am, in a Brooklyn backyard, reading Donald Hall,
A book of 1970s poems called “Kicking The Leaves”
From around the time when he moved back
To the old New Hampshire homestead where his
Great-grandfather farmed from after the Civil War

Until the year before the so-called Great War.
I’m told he still lives there, frail and old,
And recently The New Yorker published
What one could only read as the poet’s note of farewell.
Yet here I am, watching the birds in April

While the trees are budding and the difference
Between a male and a female sparrow becomes apparent:
The males marvel, posed but alert,
As the females shake their wings and asses,
A call for assistance from the reproductive branch.

On the pages, I return again to “the house of dying”,
A phrase written in the middle of life
And a terrific title for a book
That a person could write when he is done
Jotting down the lines of this poem and the next

With a cheap plastic pen from the Algonquin Hotel
And done sitting here, in this cathedral of spindly maples,
As cardinals, robins, finches, and brown thrashers
Descend from on high, like prayers
No one needs to answer.

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Superhero

The highway starts humming at four
The birds in the trees at five
And then I

Last night,
A neighbor called to say,
Could I move my Ford, a day in May?

For a scene in a superhero movie
They need to vacate the lot
I said,

“A superhero who can’t move a truck?”

In a heartbeat,
We will long for winter
But spring is the only season we hope for

And then I
Superhero of poetry, coffee, and all the rest.
Tug the pull chain, green light on the desk.

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Homework

Love left for another continent
And for weeks, the notebooks have been piling up
On the kitchen table.

Outside the window,
At seven-thirty, the cardinal sings his tune
To remind the world, I assume

That breakfast is overdue.
I’m reading the ABC of Achebe, Bukowski, Camus
Dotting down, in red and blue, sequences of particular musicality.

At sunset, the first glass of wine is exquisite
The second is the name on the label
After that, it’s like doing someone else’s homework.

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Twelve Bar Blues

Feed the cat
Feed the birds
Glance at poem
Change a word
 
Boil some water
Grind some beans
Brush your teeth
By all means
 
Turn the dial
Morning news
Lover’s kiss
Twelve bar blues

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