Candelabra Vines

White-blossomed vines

The roadsides and woods are strewn now
with towering vines with broad, heart-shaped leaves
and spikes of lacy white flowers.
I think of them as candelabra vines,
afire with the buzz of bees,
their blossoms giving light to late summer’s greens
and welcoming  the advent of autumn.
They serve, it seems, as a symbol of transition,
illuminating the pathway from one season
to the next, their hearts green with love,
their blossoms shining light.

The Place Where Deer Lie

Woodland Thicket

Here’s where the deer lie,
sheltered by sycamores,
cooled by the green leaves
of wild, tall sunflowers,
the sun filtering down
to kiss their pelts with warmth.
This is the place they dream of
in winter, the place they sing of
in lullabies to newborn fawns
in early spring when they
lick their soft hair and promise
them tomorrows filled
with flowers and sunshine.

The Eyes of the Beholder

Sweet Peas and Jewelweed

“Certain colors are beautiful together; other colors aren’t.”
That’s what she said, standing before her freshman class
of art students.  I remember finding that a curious thing
to say.  “Take, for instance,” she continued, “pink and orange.
Each has its own fine qualities, but never, when combined,
can they be considered beautiful”.   The students took notes.
I started drawing doodles, tuned her out, fell into dreams.
I thought of her today as I came upon the wildflowers.
I laughed. Tell it to the bees, I thought.
Clearly, I was not the only one who didn’t listen.

The First Day of School

The Lake at Brady's Run Park

An unfamiliar quiet hangs over the lake today,
a kind of waiting for the high-pitched shouts
and laughter that danced over its waves
on every sunny day since June.
The children are gone,
hauled from their homes this morning
in shiny yellow buses to the county’s schools.
I suppose they were filled with excitement
and mostly glad for something new,
for a reunion with old friends,
for moving once again toward grown-up.
But here at the lake, it’s awfully quiet.
I walk its shores and whisper to its waves,
“I know.  I know.”

Blessing the Sunflowers

Field of Sunflowers

Acres and acres of sunflowers,
more than you could count in a day,
stood in the afternoon sun,
each head, heavy with seeds, bowed
as if in gratitude for the joy
of such production.  Overhead,
in a deep blue sky, a single cloud flew,
looking like an angel with outspread
gauzy wings, come to bless them.
And a warm breeze, as light as feathers,
floated across the broad field,
sighing a reverent Amen.

What the Creek Knows

Beaver Creek, E Liverpool, Ohio

Whether flowing through patches of sunlight,
or drifting through deep summer shade,
whether gliding over rocks and stones,
or parting for the slick darting fishes
and the paddling of thick, webbed feet,
whether tumbling from heights,
or lingering on the flatlands,
in rain, in wind, beneath starlight,
in snow, the creek has only one guideline:
How easy can I let this be?