Monday, December 19, 2011

Winter Solstice

The sun is so strong –
I shade my eyes as it slices
Through the window, across the table.
Warmth hits my cheek and
I almost purr;
Safe inside, carols playing incessantly
While other customers come and go
And across divided lanes you sit and
I wait, waited, will wait
As long as forever.

This short day will grow tomorrow
And tomorrow will grant one more scrap of light
One more ounce of hope so
Plans will grow under the frozen
Terra firma, terra nostra,
Terra nova tomorrow when
The sun stays one more moment
Than today.

Monday, December 5, 2011

When You Are Gone

When you are gone the air has a different quality:
That of expectation, as if the house itself is awaiting your return.
The rooms each have an empty and useless condition, 
No matter how many of the rest of us fill them.

We pack the days when you are gone with activity and work,
And yet they seem oddly unproductive.
I go to sleep late, putting off the hour as if
There is something that hasn’t yet happened.

I cannot communicate to your disembodied voice on the phone
The nuances of our day,
Or the subtleties of my missing of you.

Friday, December 2, 2011

She Sits on the Whitewashed Veranda

On the occasion of the 80th birthday of Catherine Callimanopoulos Mazarakis, my dear mother-in-law.

She Sits on the Whitewashed Veranda

In my mind’s eye she sits on the whitewashed veranda:
Low in her chair, eyes unfocused on Tsougria.
Chin supported by her hand,
A small dog in her lap, she sighs.

Her thoughts and concerns travel over years and miles
To rest on tall cypress trees and resilient gerania.
A small smile plays at the corner of her mouth
As the ferry’s wake crashes on the beach below.

In a moment her solitude will be broken
By the attentions of her offspring seeking her favor.
She rises smiling, and arm-in-arm
They meander to the others at the dinner table.

Twilight now – the sun will set;
The moon will rise.

September, 2011