Tuesday, September 10, 2013

a new poem

I haven't a lot to put up this week, the last week having been so centered on our oldest daughter's wedding. She and her wonderful partner have been living together for some time, and have produced, in fact, a twin grandson and -daughter, Creston and Ivy, among the very brightest lights of our lives. But I suppose I am still old-fashioned enough to rejoice in this "official" commitment.

Oldest son Creston makes custom electric guitars (true works of art: http://crestonguitars.com/), and is thus well acquainted in the music world: he recruited a kick-ass band if there ever was one, led by the nonpareil Mark Spencer (well worth Googling too). So it was a thoroughly joyous event.

My wife of thirty years and I are headed to our Maine cabin again. I have a board retreat to attend for the Downeast Lakes Land Trust, of which I am current president. (Check downeastlakes.org.) But we'll sneak in a few days of r & r before and after.

To that extent, the valedictory poem I wrote early last month upon closing up (or so I thought) the cabin is a touch off with respect to the occasion I imagined it to mark. But I'll post it anyhow. I kinda like it.


Final Evening at Oxbrook Camp

            Our loons still scull on the pewter
            calm of the lake, the chick having dodged
            the eagle one more day.
            The valorous drake and hen both held it
            between their bodies while the raptor circled. 
            Reprieve. And here I am, old.

            I stooped an hour ago
            to dump the pail of dace I’d trapped,
            then watched them scatter, the ones
            we hadn’t hooked through their dorsals for bait.
            Twenty or so now swim at large–
            still prey, but not to us,

            Who are headed home in the morning.
            I’m poised to throw away this clutch
            of wilting black-eyed Susans
            picked wild by my wife of all these years
            to grace our painted metal table,
            where we lifted ladders of spine

            from fat white perch, last supper.
            So here I am, this aging man
            who wants somehow to write
            only one love song after another.
            I pause at dusk, I blink, I toss
            Our dim bouquet into late summer’s woods.

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