early afternoon in july

last summers evening 3

the fragility of the day holds fast
in the light of early afternoon
in a year heavy
with veiled feelings
in the eyes of passers by

wands of dried grasses
tasseled in gold
and magic
seem to wave over our worries

look how sparrows glean the field
how lilies gild the meadow
rain falls on us all,
the just and unjust,
criminal and saint

we are all alive
under this fragile light
of early afternoon
in july

hot july afternoon

July morning sun

sun is unfolding across my face
freckled and lined
by all those
ancient summers worn
by dust and seared green pines
fragrant sap sticky as preserved
amber of peaches
warm from the stove
stirred in the ancient black pot
of fore-mothers
and from their hands
this tongue
their song, sung in wordless
voice
murmuring incantations above
pots and babies and lovers bodies
asleep in the shade
of a hot July afternoon

summer night in the Ozarks

sweet water from the well
casts the evenings magic spell
as the fiddlers resin up their bows

mandolins court and spark
in early summers dark
lighting fireflies to twinkle and glow

its not every night but now
we sing and tell stories how
we lived and dreamed and truly loved

its not every night but when
we gather up to dance again
and music rises
to the summer moon above

so grab your partner
coo and dove
hug your friends and swing your love
cause all we have is the music
and the stars

its not every night but now
we are here and this is how
we celebrate the music
of our lives

sam and aly c
bo and the rebel hounds
<img
bob on his bday

I am longing for my friends and our summer nights filled with music and laughter.
This was written a few years ago and some of us have moved away and some have died. But this will always be my memory of our friendships and our love in a very specail place and time.

careless

I have become careless
in this lockdown time
as if this time was out of regular old normal time

This morning, I reached in for blueberries and found them already molded, gone gray
and lettuce wilted to slime
I have become careless with the food someone else gathered from shelves and plunked down in my car trunk
only to be thrown out just after the weekly garbage pick up.

I have become careless with friendships and relations
Calls early on in March and April were tinged with panic and overwrought sentiment
Now most maskless and tired of all the worry,
they have moved on,
leaving me behind closed doors and silent phones.

Squandering these moments,
I have become careless with time itself
as if these hoarded hours will be added on
to the end of my days-
a bonus for being good and careful

and repeat…and repeat…and repeat

I mailed the postcard
found in your old Bible
I didn’t have a stamp
so just wrote please forward

to whom it may concern

Signed it with a pen
I picked up at the five and dime
in Waco
a long time ago

The ink was dried up

I hope you can read it
anyway

It was just the message
I heard when I called
the number on the wall

It said Sinner
repent

and repeat…

junk mail

I listen to the men working
on digging a long deep trench
across the road.
Now, no way to get in,
no way to get out.

How appropriate a metaphor
don’t you think-
we are here, either in place
or out in the world,
each with our own freedom in tact.

But we can’t get in or out
of this old world alive,
don’t you know.

And how will the nice lady
who delivers the mail
and gives the small dog treats
ever find her way
with our unasked for mail.

habit forming

He has taken to worry
not something in his wheelhouse
never had a care in the world
It was always my occupation
until I gave worry up for Lent
and forgot to pick it back up

So now he has become a list maker
and a fine print reader
and a washer of hands singing
an extra verse for good measure

I am happily ensconced in his newly acquired habit
as the worry lines behind his mask
accentuate his beautiful blue eyes

translation

I read translations of poetry, books
written in a language I do not understand
which become books of poetry
in my language, I do not understand

I wish I spoke another language.
All I have is this cursive inked stained
language, spoken to my dead parents
and brother when I read prayers and psalms
of a dead king in translation.

I do speak a bit of wildness, river song
and maybe old catfish dialect that no longer
is in fashion or wanted or needed.
But there are times when we sit together,
the small brown sparrows and I

and we can communicate in sign language,
no feeding the birds or stop
look and listen

fortuna

shaded by years of childhood
and myths telling and laughter filling
in blanks I have come to possess
after a lifetime of living these
moments never to hold them close
again losing father then mother then
brother and the certainty of losses
to come I wonder at what life had in
store after all after all
that I had focused instead of
following the trail left
by inclination and desire
the bread crumbs from tables where
I wished to sit and sate
my appetites of word and syntax
and color fortuna