3 Poems

Prayer to Februus

In December,
the old plum looked ready
to give back the carbon
she had borrowed from the sky

Mushrooms gathering
round her trunk
like monks
at a funeral.

But February found her
decked out in white flowers,
her head loud
with bees.

The widower, outside
for the first time since the wake,
clutches his walker and stares up
into her blossoming crown.

He mutters a silent prayer,
“Send a late frost to kill these flowers.
Deliver these brittle branches
from the burden of too much fruit.”

Ratio of Night to Day

Nine days to Winter Solstice
and the Gingko
standing on our street
has just begun undressing
for winter.

Apparently unaware
of the time of year,
her skirt still shows
more green than yellow;
she’s naked
only in her crown.

Lucky street—
lying under a blanket
of little golden kimonos.

The One That Gets Away

Sometimes the beauty of the world
leaps out in ambush
from under the bank
where the water darkens
almost enough to hide
the shadow swimming toward me.

When the shadow’s gaping mouth
becomes visible,
the thrill of the place
washes over the dams I’ve built
to hold back the constant onrush
of the miraculous.

I jerk the line
before the fish can take the fly––
Frightened now, he disappears
into the play of light, shadow, and water,
leaving me waist deep on slippery boulders,
slack line trailing downstream,
grateful that in defeat

I’ve glimpsed the hook
bound to the beauty
of what constantly fishes for me.

Interconnecting Circles

#Joe Lamb