Warmth in Winter

February 10, 2008 at 2:52 am (Poetry) (, , )

Crocus in Snow

Lay a blanket down and settle against the hill

To take in the blueness of the sky

Open a bottle of wine to celebrate

The fresh scent of pine on the air

Cool and soothing against the cheek

Like the memory of a kiss.

The whisper of a pleasant breeze in the trees is interrupted…

In the distance that lonely freight train from nowhere

passes slowly on its way to anywhere else.

Mournfully calling out, it exists inside a Johnny Cash song,

And knows full well you won’t follow along this time.

Anywhere else is a dream of swirling snow

Where overstuffed coats are pulled tight against near-frozen bodies.

Nowhere is a place you’ve been with tears in your eyes

Tears you shouldn’t be willing to shed

When they turn to droplets of cruel ice on tender skin.

You should smile at the warmth instead

Put your faith in the here and now

Throw rocks in the stream

Touch the warm golden light from the evening sun

And dance with the pleasure of life.

How lush life can be,

How calm it is

Where the green grass beckons

And flowers bloom against the odds

in mid-winter.


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A Smile and a Drawl

February 7, 2008 at 8:21 am (Poetry, RefleXions) (, , , , , )

Rainbow Row

 Charleston, South Carolina has a heartbeat all its own,
     Steady and slow,
The sound is St. Michael’s bell that has rung like clockwork
     For three-hundred years,
     Like an uncracked Liberty Bell
          Through two wars, slavery and civil rights,
And always it sings, “sweet freedom” as it tolls the hour
Over cobblestone streets and tourists taking carriage rides.

Couples still do their promenade on the Battery,
First down from their homes and back
     on Sundays after mandatory church,
With sea spray splashing on white fancy frocks
     and white planters’ suits,
The sound of Palmetto branches rattling
     In the sultry breeze,
          barely audible between the roaring roll of waves.

Rainbow Row, its softly rainbow colored houses
     Turned sideways to the road
     Each facing a garden with intricately designed wrought iron gates,
     And walls of tabby, oyster shells
          peeking out from accidental artistically placed patches.

It’s a matter of pride that only a few blocks away
Porgy met Bess and sang “Summertime” from a porch
     less well kept but sideways to the main road.
          It’s Charleston, after all.
And there’s always ambiance, a smile and a drawl.

© 2008 C. Harter Amos

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