There must be a word somewhere
for this kind of tired
bone-weary does not come close
Painted fingers, broken nails
to a long day’s creation
Feet ache, hips hurt, and knees too
but still the roses
offer their heady perfume
Listening to his snoring
from the other room
jealousy invades my heart
The soft blankets and pillows
call to me to rest
head on pillow, sleep descends
Salt and fish and sand
gritting on gray planks
and old men in faded jeans
watching lines in the water
and herons diving
from pier to waves to old boats
listing in dunes, unused
since anyone can remember
and the sun, red red red
Carolina in the morning
from a prompt at First Fifty
Sun between morning showers
sparkles falling drops
tears from heaven matching mine
Gather nuts and hawthorn branches,
Build a fire and pick a posy,
Dance with ribbons ’round the pole,
wash your face in the morning dew.
The first of summer has opened its eyes,
the world is fresh and new a-borning,
It’s May, it’s May, the birds all sing,
and the lark flies high this morning!
I hear them calling me to leave this place and drive to town,
To listen to their eager words and laughter, to hear the news
Of who did what and when and to whom it was done and why.
I can almost hear their words, tumbling over each other in excitement,
their laughter ringing out like the bells in the church tower,
Singing over and over, “Come! Come and join us!
Hear what we have to say! Tell us your news!”
I almost give in to the temptation to wash my garden-dirty hands,
Sleek back my hair and shed my work-worn jeans,
But I resist.
There are chokeholds of bindweed to remove from the lilies,
And the petunias need watering. Tiny weeds sprout between
The parsley and dill and the dogs have scattered the mulch
That beds the lavender. I plod on
with my watering cans and dirty hands, and for a moment
settle on my haunches to listen to another song—
The honeybees working the persimmon bloom above my head,
The bumbling bee on the pink spirea, and the clatter of my husband’s tools
As he repairs, once again, the ailing mower.
The din from town disappears; I hear the slosh of water
falling on thirsty ground, and in my head the words of this poem
Find their timid way.
On my way out this morning
across the ridge and around
the end of the world turn
I looked in my rear view mirror
and saw what I was leaving behind.
It is not easy to keep going
when I know that behind me
the dew is soft on bending grass,
the birds are calling from nests,
turkeys herd their young,
tomatoes hang ripe for picking,
dill and basil are ready for harvest,
and flowers turn their heads,
just as I did,
to see what was left behind.
The leaving is quick, easy:
what remains behind,
messy, unfinished, and raw.