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Category: Nature

haiku: 24 April 2024

starlings in my yard
the memory of you
on my lips

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24 April 2024
Charlottesville VA
NaPoWriMo Day 24

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POEM: Faith


You’re growing flowers for the first time.
Seeds to seedlings to holes in the ground.
It’s an act of faith, to leave them there.
To trust in growth, in earth, in rain.
To believe that in the end beauty rises.
This is a holiness worth worshipping.
This is a sacred rite to perform.

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11 April 2024
Charlottesville VA
NaPoWriMo Day 11

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POEM: The Stages Of Watering A Dead Plant

The Stages Of Watering A Dead Plant

The first step is to not admit defeat.
Even as green turns to brown
and the leaves curl inward,
you must cling to delusion.

The soil will accept the water,
at least for a while.
It will join you in looking away

as you fill half a teacup at the kitchen sink
and upend it into the pot.

After a few days, though, the embarrassed soil
will release its burden onto the dish below.

This is the crucial moment,
as you dutifully carry the dish back to the sink,
then open the curtains
to bathe the corpse in light.

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25 November 2023
Charlottesville VA

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POEM: Describing A Satellite

Describing A Satellite

For the Earth,
both hands in an arc.
A fist for the moon.
Gravity a rope,
unseen in the dark.

Palms up for the tides,
both high and low,
the hands raise and lower
as they ebb and flow.

The planet spins,
the pull taunts,
the moon is what
the water wants.

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20 September 2023
Charlottesville VA

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POEM: When We Come To It

When We Come To It

The road had been there since at least the 1830s,
if the cornerstone on the red farmhouse was right.
At some point it had been diverted up the hill,
rendering the little concrete bridge obsolete.
The boy had moved there in the 80s, into a log home
on what had been a vacant bit of hillside.
He found the bridge one day while exploring past the pond.
When he found the bridge, he found the creek.
It led back into acres of forest, all the way to the 4-H camp.
He followed the twisting water into the trees,
the sun’s rays reaching, but only just.
A few years later he brought a city kid out there.
The kid jumped out onto a tree limb hanging
over the water; the limb sprang up and tossed the kid
several feet. He was surprised but not hurt,
so neither of them mentioned it when they got back.
The boy had many adventures among the trees:
daring escapes and forest battles and wilderness hikes.
Even when somebody bought the plot of land next door,
he still snuck into the forest and followed the water.
Sometimes in the summer he could hear the PA system
from the 4-H camp, calling the campers to lunch or dinner.
Eventually he grew up and stopped visiting the bridge
and the creek and the forest. Then the house was sold.
The new owners changed the color.

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4 September 2023
Charlottesville VA

This is poem 45 in a series called 50 Days Till 50 Years. I’m writing a poem a day for the 50 days leading up to my 50th birthday. I’m going to try to focus on memories of my past, and the people who inhabited it.

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