Dull morning light bereft of warmth
fills in the corners
and blackberry winter.
The blooms, white against cold green leaves,
bramble along the rocky path,
armored with thorns
and protected by poison ivy
just finding its vigor.
Shivering anticipations of hot summer days
purpled with jeweled fruit
left by the chortling robins
and cobblers fresh from the oven.
The scent rises from the damp cool earth,
sweet as my grandmothers perfume.
That smell that still permeates the drawer
of the old vanity
with its foxed mirror.
When I open it,
Our Lady of the Hyacinths,
in her pale lilac cloak suffused with perfume
and held high by fat cheeked cherubs,
like the little chalkware angels
that perched on her vanity top
with chipped wings
and bashful eyes.
I gently hold the heady blossoms
as I rake away the last of autumn’s leaves.
Sweetness lingers in my hands,
hands that are shaped like my grandmothers,
square palms with short fingers,
blessed by Our Lady of the Hyacinths.
my curiosity is piqued
in this greening season of new
this beginning season seeded in hay fields
and birds nests
where everyone raises their faces
to the warming sun
making plans and lists of things to do
but I feel only
not cloaked in sad grays and cold blues
but with eyes wide to the possibilities
of this shedding dead wood
and indeliberate falling away
into the warm vernal sun
i thank You God for most this amazing day
By e e cummings
i thank You God for most this amazing day:
for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday;this is the birth
day of life and love and wings:and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)
how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any-lifted from the no
of all nothing-human merely being
doubt unimaginably You?
(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)
Driving along the ridge,
Bright sun in a cold sky,
The bar ditch is filled with the first blush of spring.
Effervescent purple henbit covers the ground,
Weeds of childrens delight,
First bouquets of the season.
When my nieces were babes,
These weeds were their favorite flower until their father
Mowed the yard,
Decimating their wild flower garden and bringing bereft tears.
Did my grandfather tell me the story of why we call the ditches
Along the roadside ‘bar ditches’?
The dirt was borrowed ‘bar-red’
To raise the road, flattened for the wagons then model Ts
To travel above the fields.
Memory sometimes obscures the truth.
I remember that my father died on Palm Sunday,
Though it is not the truth.
But that is the memory I keep.
And it is Palm Sunday once again,
Not the date of his leave taking
But still the day I grieve.
And it is the first day of spring,
The day I remember my nieces’ grief
Over the heaped green weeds across their yard.
On this day, memory, unreliable and exact,
Borrows the joy before the grief…
Its the first of spring and all the birds sing
And little children palm frond process
Waving welcome the King.
It seems the rotation of the earth
speeds up and
gravity is loosened just a bit
as the gusts pull
at everything standing.
Whips of forsythia
slash yellow in the slicing wind
while the daffodils
hold onto their bonnets
and small birds hide
in the pollen sugared cedars.
Eastertide on the Ridge
The passion of spring awakes
with the blooming of the serviceberry,
first blooms for the early spring graves.
The rocky paths are soon strewn,
not with palm fronds,
but the blown blossoms of redbuds,
a confetti of papery pinks and faded roses.
Earth’s resurrection promise
is finally in full view
as the dogwoods bring forth their flowers,
decorating the hillsides
in Christ’s wounds.
He is Risen
He is Risen, Indeed!