Posts Tagged Upstate
Two mangy dogs down by the Claverack Creek
Insist that, on early spring mornings,
County Road 25 belongs to canines,
Not cars, silence or jogging poets,
So each morning they come at me
In all their dirty, furry little anger,
Balancing their pace with their courage,
Until I turn and jump toward them, arms out,
The sudden star of an Off-Broadway musical,
A move any crackpot poet knew was coming.
I’m no man of headaches and this one took three days
To take off, lifting like a flock of geese,
Clucks and double clucks,
A retired steam locomotive on the Fourth of July,
The coughing and whispering of pressurized air.
My furry henchmen, having exchanged glances,
Steal away, bewildered, as many an audience.
Then, conquering the moment, I stand by the river
Where the other morning I stepped in
And swam against the current, moving and not moving.
Writing is what happens while you’re sleeping
And at daybreak, it all comes floating by —
Familiar voices, a missing paragraph, this poem.
All the poet has to do is the living, the loving,
The exhilarating loneliness of typing.
After summer in New York
Fall feels like spring
And then a birthday in October
Reminds you it’s precious to get older
So you leave town
Shy of the morning commuters
To pick apples upstate in the drizzle,
Smelling the dirt, the wet grass
As your hand reaches for that apple
That the ones before you couldn’t quite reach
And then you drive home like after church
Under foliage the color of all sermons
You find an old Danish recipe for dried apples
You scald Mason jars for aquavit
Adding vanilla, star anise, cinnamon sticks
Then you seal the lids. Winter.