Ascending into chilly alpine air,
Beneath the lift line, I could barely see
Through blowing snow, a purple object there:
A glove half-buried underneath a tree.
Its palm was facing upwards, fingers flexed,
As if in search of that unlucky hand
Whose owner was indubitably vexed,
To force bare flesh the winter to withstand.
Until today, I thought that a right glove
Would sorrow when it went without its left,
But now I understand the right’s true love;
Without each other, each remains bereft-
I think that frigid skier would accede:
If you’re a hand, then glove is all you need.
To breakfast at sea level then to sup
Eight thousand feet above where you began
And see a cloudy peak when you look up,
Such boundless beauty fills one with elan.
And yet, each step you take further uphill
Convinces you your boots are made of lead.
You persevere, of course, by force of will
Ignoring racing heart and lightened head.
Succumbing to that first fatigue results
In curative, rejuvenating rest.
The following day, awake, arise, exult,
If you are not in cardiac arrest.
So take advantage– go outside and play.
A blizzard may blow in on any day.
A pelican that yawns skimming the sea,
And splashes when his bill catches a crest;
A fledgling owlet tumbles from a tree;
An eagle lands, but overshoots its nest;
The imprint of a dove in window dust,
When wounded pride’s the only injury;
These graceful creatures clearly can’t be fussed,
To find amusement in lost dignity.
For them, such errors can mean life or death,
But thankfully, not even evolution
Can shield from chaos creatures that draw breath;
Perhaps to laugh is mankind’s contribution.
And those who watch the antics of the crows
Know humor’s not exclusively bestowed.
Returning to a story that you’ve read
Brings with it memories of that first time
When you were captured by the tale, although
You know this reading won’t be so sublime.
The end holds no surprise, the characters
Can’t fool you with dissembling, novelty
No longer has its glittering allure,
Though now it has familiarity:
And while you may recall romantic scenes
Between a lover and his paramour,
You can’t recall what happens in between,
And only reading will unlock that door.
Don’t be surprised if visiting transcends
Your goal of spending time with your old friends.
Titian, ginger, russet, carrot-top,
Strawberry, copper, auburn, henna, red;
Out of the drab world those bright colors pop,
Unrivaled hues that ever graced a head.
Beneath those flaming tresses freckles spill
Along the neck and down the shoulders white;
A milky way in negative, I thrill
To kiss each dusky star in that pale night.
But how can tender skin remain so smooth
When dazzling fires blaze so close at hand?
And though there is no answer, I approve
Of multiple attempts to understand.
And over time I hope that I have earned
The splendid privilege of being burned.
When I have had my eye upon a goal
For many months and it’s at last achieved,
Where once was structure, there is now a hole,
And for those strictures I perversely grieve.
Instead of finding joy in leisure time
I mourn the comfort of the regimen,
And mundane tasks will hardly seem sublime
When dreams of greatness are within my ken.
So any trifling task’s an obstacle
Until a bit of progress has been made,
At which point, doing little feels so dull,
And any fears of failure are allayed.
With every step, the path seems less adverse.
Forgetfulness: my blessing and my curse.
Within the silence, which descends between
The waves of traffic, comes the quiet patter
Of droplets falling softly from the green
To brown ground, strewn with vegetable matter.
As one who weeps while in the stylist’s chair
To see trimmed tresses curling on the floor,
Do trees mourn when their leaves leave branches bare,
Or do they save their tears for something more?
The bleeding bark is cool beneath my hand,
Its scars are rough against my fingertips,
But feeling them, I start to understand:
It’s not from sorrow that the foliage drips.
From high above the rough and rushing sweep,
They find the world so lovely as to weep.
If you think it portends invalidation
Of sonnet form to have no variation
In rhyme, you should prepare for consternation:
I suffer from an “ation” word fixation.
Is rhyming A and B a violation
Of scheme, or is is it owed appreciation
As virtuosic rhyming demonstration,
Or as a means to build anticipation?
I have such fun with verbal ostentation,
Which well befits my writing reputation,
And listing words that cause stultification
Helps me avoid them in communication.
So please forgive this brief pontification
Against the creep of nominalization.
Inspiration: Zombie Nouns by Helen Sword.
While Bounce and Wag may be devoted friends,
Each has some strengths and some deficiencies.
When Wag devours food, Bounce condescends,
In time, that food his hunger may appease.
When playing, Wag will zig and Bounce will zag,
They’ll bounce and wag, your greeting to announce.
In general, Bounce bounces and Wag wags,
Except when Bounce may wag and Wag will bounce.
When treats are in the offing, both will wag,
And when we go on walkies, both will bounce.
Though Bounce will often try to lollygag.
Of self control, Wag hasn’t got an ounce.
Their virtues are amusing to extol,
Their vices make my tribute to them whole.
I see you by the glass, your jaw gone slack
Surveying my prodigious majesty,
Your taste cannot be faulted, yet you lack
Awareness of your own hypocrisy.
When children press their hands against my tank,
Their fingers flat against the curving glass,
Their wonderment’s encompassing and frank,
Their innocence will merit them a pass.
A child’s esteem’s not based on perceived rarity.
Whence comes their food, they do not have a choice.
They are oblivious to the barbarity,
By which the careless nearly drowned my voice.
Remember, what you do after you leave
May help to give one like me a reprieve.