As the Oyster Forms the Pearl
As the oyster forms the pearl,
So the poet pens the verse
As balm for the current ache
Born out of the ancient curse.
As the oyster feels compelled
To shellac the sandy grain,
So the poet feels the urge
To transmogrify the pain.
So the pearl grows rich and round
As its luster covers the sand.
So the verse unseen takes form
In its way, designed unplanned.
Sad the pearl that lies unseen
In the depths of the murky sea.
Sad the verse that dies unheard
In the heart clandestinely.
So the diver frees the pearl,
Breaks the stony shell apart.
So the poet frees the verse
Ripped out of his broken heart.
NOTES: Apparently there is some skepticism about my assertion that April is Poetry Month.
Let this settle the matter once and for all.
Let’s call this one an extended metaphor.
I Sing Not for Glory
I sing not for glory nor for bread,
Nor for the praise of the credentialed clique.
But for hire more valuable instead,
To touch the honest kindred heart I seek.
I sing for lovers when love is green,
When time stops for a solitary kiss.
When light shines anew as with new eyes seen,
I celebrate your fey and fragile bliss.
I sing for the lonely, lovelorn heart,
When light grows cold and aching will not cease,
When your enchanted world falls all apart,
I offer modest salve to give you peace.
I sing for the pilgrim searching soul
Pursuing the heart’s true cause and treasure.
May heaven’s hound, you hasten to your goal,
And propel you to your proper pleasure.
I sing for the wise who see their end,
And, too, for those who have not yet awoke.
For to a common home we all descend,
With common dirt for all our common cloak.
I sing not for money nor for art,
Nor to amuse curators of our trade.
The simple wages of the simple heart
Will satisfy when my accounts are weighed.
NOTES: I understand April is Poetry Month. In keeping with this solemn occasion, here’s a poem about poetry.
The wind and you played in my hair,
You lambent in the moon,
The night arranged as by design,
Afresh the breeze and warm our hands,
So lately introduced,
Traced so gently new found lands,
From tyranny aloosed.
While all around with fire and bang
Our freedom was proclaimed,
A nation’s liberty was meant,
To us, two hearts unchained.
NOTES: I celebrate the Fourth of July as a double holiday. I’m proud and happy to honor our exceptional America and call it home.
And, it also warms my heart to remember the night I discovered my role in an on-going love story.
My personal affection for July Fourth goes back to 1982, when a young couple snuck to the roof of the Calhoun Beach Club in Minneapolis to watch the fireworks. This perch, high above Lake Calhoun, offered a 360 degree view of the entire Twin Cities area. You could see several fireworks displays from there, both near and far away.
It was rather romantic.