Excerpt_poem_Saturday Martini_chamrickwriter_randomstoryteller_with images of roses at Gibbs Gardens

Saturday Martini: To My Best Friend (somewhere in Pueblo, Colorado)

Japanese Gardens_Gibbs Gardens_Ball Ground GA_chamrickwriter_randomstoryteller

Late October light slants, stingy at 6 p.m.

I will fall back in early November

For an extra hour of shadow time,

Of cool sleep, a false gain against the loss

Of afternoon gold and blinks into azure bliss

Where contrails etch high-flown ice-crystal beauty.

You showed me fragments, quickening a wakefulness

Within my darkened room—a pull on the blinds,

And a rainbow shot through an antique prism,

And I yearned for the tiny magnificence

Of southern autumn flecking your eyes,

The perfect iris ambiguity

Of green-into-gold-into-bronze-into-rainy-gray.

Oh, these are the days of wine-soaked glory—

When fall flames the Japanese maples

Leaving in chlorophyll-starved splendor

And sets crimson fire to full-sun burning bushes;

Scraggles of yearend roses scrape skyward

Or ground-sink in tattered bouquets.

Near death is full, palpitating—

Drunk on this bittersweet October afternoon,

A bee bumbles and greedily clutches

A fistful of honey-yellow stamens

Rippling my late-summer Iowa memory

Of wheat dipping, bowing, rolling west;

I craved the pull of that wind-mellowed phrase,

But F-sharp minor cross-wired my brain violet;

My hands are witless things, deaf to sounding color,

Yet you heard, somehow heard, rhythms halting,

And grace notes chirping, and my wistful banging

At a far-flung purplish fantaisie;

Your right hand took the middle voice; your left, the bass,

Tempering my two-hand flails at trills and dots,

And I down-stepped a semitone to F sharp;

Our four-hand blue noted harmonic shifts and modulated—

A carefulness, like precision-measured gin

From a sapphire bottle, kissed with vermouth

And two drops of orange bitters—I paused

For the long-distance click of frosted glasses

And mourned the phrase I would never grasp:

Six minutes of perfect F-sharp minor.

And so, we play on, October moistening our lips,

Faithful in our fashion to burnished friendship,

Like copper-edged magnolia leaves gleaming hazel

While roses bleed the ground before butchering frost.

Nature has a way of turning parlor tricks:

The heart line forks in the palm of my right hand,

Oh, mon semblable, oh, mon frère.

 

5 Comments

  1. Leila Lou Baldwin

    Oh the wistfulness of the passing seasons….and life. You captured it so beautifully my friend..looking forward to the book of poetry!

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