Monday, March 14, 2011

Two Windy Poems

Saturday afternoon brought us one of those wonderful spring cold fronts here in Central Florida. The sun was shining and the wind swooped in with a consistent, playful blow. A kite-flier's delight. Not owning a kite however, I was more than happy to go for a run through the woods. The fresh northerly rushing about through the pines and oaks makes such a beautiful noise. I could hear the sweeps of wind over the landscape. Bright yellow jessamine flowers flew from the treetops into the sky. So in honor of springtime, here are two windy poems. Hang on to your hats!

Gallery of Winds

Hundreds of named winds:
chinook, pampero, mistral, simoom
for example. Libeccio, habagat.
Winds that altered history.
Winds that fanned love.
But what of the unnamed,
like lost poems,
their thousands never published
but beautiful all the same?
The wind through a retriever’s smile
leaning out the car window.
The wind of a door slamming.
The faint breath when the sun first rises
or sets. Wind that hides in grass.
Wind that deceives,
caprioles and pollinates.
And what of the moment, rarest of all,
when there is no wind even in the slightest?
Would we know how to behave in that kind of stillness,
the scent deadened in its tracks,
trees frozen in panic,
the lake’s waves never writing
what they felt most deeply?
Oh Great Stirring,
innumerable voices held
on a single fluctuating syllable.
Named and unnamed.
Howling, whispered.
Bring us news from other minds
distant as continents.
Deliver dust and birds
and storms with names of their own.
Honor the impulse and pressure
that sends these things flying.

East Wind Over Weehawken, Hopper 1934

The hedges liberated,
the seedy lawn aloft.
The air conditioner
hacked for copper.
The plywood nailed.
The plywood thieved.
The viscous pool
translating salamander.
Dark glass. Signs. Symbols.
The doors undoored. Lost keys.
The bottles in the trees.
The gutted accounts.
The dried root in the gut.
The dandelion burst.
The auction tomorrow.
The wind. The wind.
In abandoned gardens
the butterflies rise all the more.

East Wind Over Weehawken by Edward Hopper (1934)

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