Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Strange how sounds start a day:
one sees a salmon sky, hears a doe
cough, and I am sure the gulped
swig of coffee triggers a gargled rush
to talk to the birds before rain drowns
their canticles, before the staccato
of raindrops on the porch roof
could transform all these dawn
sounds into a flat diminuendo
that could drone on until sundown.
But for these dawns, I know I cannot
invest any more time to understand
how this grandeur could lull souls
into reverential stupor while somewhere
else across the valley some sky is crimson,
a doe is charred venison, and warblers
fall one by quivering one into the forest
fire flinted by campers in dry Arizona.
O, that I could hold this heart ransom
for the truest and deepest things we wake
up for on mornings we’d wish we had not
risen to meet the same cold faces that we meet,
when the dying of sounds end a dry dead day!
—Albert B. Casuga
Poetic PromptThe dawn sky turns salmon. Down by the stream, the hollow cough of a deer. A swig of coffee and I’m off to count birds before the rain.---Dave Bonta, The Morning Porch, 06-07-11

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
—Gerard Manley Hopkins, God’s Grandeur
Like silt at the bottom of creek boulders,
wading against the current must be residue
of a proclaimed apostasy, a paradise lost,
somewhere East of Eden. But it was good.
There would be toil and a struggle for love,
and upon his progeny an edict of suffering
pain at the birth of all begotten offspring.
But does this act not bring exquisite joy?
What price life if it were merely a wading
through the gentle streams of a lotus land?
Why flaunt dominion over all that grows
or dies for these where nature is never spent?*
Let me shield my heart, hearth, and home
with all the strength and defiance I can hold.
—Albert B. Casuga
* Hopkins

Poem Prompt: Between the church and town,/ long-legged birds wade in river water. So much/ like them, we’ve moved against the current… From “Landscape as Elegy for the Unspent” by Luisa A. Igloria, Via Negativa, 06-05-11, http://www.vianegativa.us/20

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