Since it’s where I’ll be for the next couple weeks, I have decided to try a new series of poems: observations from the lake. The first is a letter poem, written to Carolee as I sat watching the children drift out to the middle of the bay on a raft. It doesn’t feel completely finished, but it’s a draft, and that is progress…
Here at the lake where grass and leaves rise
out of the water without any more purpose
than the empty snail shells dotting the beach
it occurs to me I have done little with my thirties.
Thirties—as though the decade was a pair of dice,
a hand of cards, a six-pack of cold long necks
sweating on a picnic table in the sun.
Ten years floating between luck and vice.
The crow cawing madly to its invisible mate agrees.
…………………..(Have you done with your one wild and precious life?)
I read between the lines….listen between the notes.
When the second bird answers—
another country heard from—
I can’t tell if she is agreeing
on the state of my empty-shell years:
or, from one mother roosting,
bored on her nest, to another
trying to make me feel better.