poems as hand- and foot-holds on a glass mountain

Two Sonnets

16.

A February snow spreads fences streets
fields houses April held bare but for light
with blank-eyed frozen whiteness softly bleak
and flavorless as Zen ice-cream not quite
as cold or transient we’ve watched it crowd
like seagulls in a field now dirty green
now rice-flecked now full-hooded in a shroud
a dancer wears a moment to be seen

so before leaping flinging rising proud
her face distorted in a silent scream
abrupt as April’s space she wears beneath
her skin her smooth legs waving to the crowd
a stunned low rustle of applause a beam
of darkness shivers as a lost belief

17.

“anything worth doing is worth doing badly”
– Jack Gilbert

April said setting her glass on the bar
signaling another; “you may have noted
the curious matching dumbbell-shaped graphs
of spring romances and fall divorces

or breakups now that no one marries”
she gives me a yellow-eyed wolf’s once-over
not hungry yet but soon to be; embarrassed
I think of absences and weeks snow-covered

in a back-country logger’s hut in Maine
Thoreau thought muddy heaven’s door-step
without Walden’s short walk to maintain
his human contacts craved without respect

she laughed; “wasted evenings give you half a chance
of living more adventurous than plants.”

2 Responses to “Two Sonnets”

  1. Craig Brandis (aka Burl Whitman)

    These are two of your absolute finest. The first has high velocity and craft, the second has humor and self awareness. Both very confident in voice and quite different. More, more.

    Reply
  2. place9011

    Thanks, Craig! I’ve been working with sonnets in part to work away from some old styles and influences. Maybe these two show a way out.

    Reply

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