June Madness

The season swells and rises ’round me;
drab brown fields have greened with early wheat.
Grasshoppers with one easy leap land in summer,
It won’t be long before the bees will follow

and then the butterflies. O June,
you thrill me with your youthful exuberance;
rose petal wind, the tanager’s scarlet breast,
the joy of flight is all around us.

Lord, give me wings, if only for a moment;
let my psyche soar beyond the stratosphere.
If, like Icarus, my wings are wax, let it be.
Small price to pay for the gift of flying free.
 

 

On Reading Amy Clampitt’s ‘Beach Glass’

I’ve walked that watery edge, Amy,
teetered on the ledge of understanding,
envisioned a Utopian paradise, but slipped
before I found it.

The endless piles of plastic,
residue of careless tourists
pushing and shoving at my mind
like waves on sand.

I’ll leave the glass to you, Amy,
shards and fragments of a sharper hue,
even the translucent turquoise, (Not all
tourists are infidels.)

I’ll take the grasses, the plumey
heads of swampy grasses nodding
their hello, downy cattails
bending in the wind.

My weedy, reedy friends
that teeter, always understanding
the uncertainty of me,
of where I’m going…

where I’ve been.

Whispers on the Wind

Summer evening
lit by a backwash of stars,
light on the leaf shine on us.
Let us live in the now
without forgetting spring
or fearing winter.

Burned by the will of the sun
flowering bronze
over the meadow –
in a search for laughter
we wilted without rain.
Time and time again

we dream in excess,
a vortex of whim, willful –
unmindful of nature’s laws,
the equals of opposite reactions,
the threat of attrition,
the haste to dance

before the music is done.
We will not pass this way again.
This is not a dress rehearsal
and though we may stumble
we rise to our knees
with lacerations,

a modicum wiser
as our motives become purer
until there is no motive,
simply a celebration
of the revelation
Time is on our side.

First Day of Summer

A magic flute, a silver note,
a robin on the wing,
everything is celebrating
summer     and I
am one with them.

My eyes see only art:
the weed, the vine, the bloom,
the supple Maple tree,
Each is a maestro
in its proclivity to dance, or sing,
or merely be.

Though I,
wan mortal that I am,
stand paler
by their beauty, Today
I am at once the wing-ed bird
and the graceful tree.

Jellyfish

Phosphorescent pinks and greens,
psychedelic moons with medusa strands
snaking out around them, they have
nowhere to go and are in no hurry to get there.

With a six hundred million year history,
they are attuned to patience.

Though much cuter than their cousins,
those spiny anemones,
these gelatinous fish have not fallen far
from the tree.  Satisfied to languish on the tides,

their sting is their only protection and that
is more than enough.

Unlike people, a species most generally blessed
with heart and brain and backbone,  jellyfish
happily exist and obviously thrive
with none of the above.

As with love, we often underestimate these creatures
until we’ve been stung.

Joy Harjo becomes first Native American U.S. Poet Laureate

Excerpted from NPR website:

Joy Harjo will become the 23rd Poet Laureate of the United States, making her the first Native American to hold the position.

Shawn Miller/Library of Congress

Poet, writer and musician Joy Harjo — a member of the Muskogee Creek Nation — often draws on Native American stories, languages and myths. But she says that she’s not self-consciously trying to bring that material into her work. If anything, it’s the other way around.

….

A native and resident of Tulsa, Okla. — she is also the first Oklahoman to be named U.S. Poet Laureate — Harjo says the appointment is an opportunity to continue a role she’s often assumed throughout her career: as an “ambassador” of poetry. The Library of Congress calls the position “the nation’s official poet,” and assigns a “modest minimum” of official duties in order to enable individual projects designed “to raise the national consciousness to a greater appreciation of the reading and writing of poetry.”

 

Full article at: NPR site

 

A New Book to Read

Savvy

Savvy: Navigating Fake Companies, Fake Leaders and Fake News in the Post-Trust Era Hardcover

Quotes from/about Savvy:

“Technology has turbo-charged its spread leaving us inundated with misrepresentations, exaggerations, and outright lies. Finding the truth is like searching for a needle in a haystack.”

“We are in a crisis of trust—no longer knowing who or what to believe.

In the post-trust era, so much is out of our control, and yet there are ways in which we can inoculate ourselves. Savvy is a book about the human glitches that cause us to fall for alternative facts and what we can do to override them.”