Last flash of limbs
in a pagan dance
as shadows crawl
across the creek
to pull night’s curtain up
into the stars.
The canyon has come to life
with promises of spring—
birds and trees are talking
above the bulls’ primal bellowing—
tension spills with energy.
Shrill yips and howls
in every draw ignites
to exasperate the dogs.
Even the old flesh perks up
with fresh strategies,
just in case the market’s up
and we get more rain—
just enough to do it over again.
Blue Oak rounds too big for the woodstove
collect near the splitter in a pile—energy
stored in rings of sun, years of rain—
the severed dead, hard and dry inside.
We look ahead to ceremony, prepare
as we go, set aside the burls and forks,
too twisted to split, for the outside fire
and generations of flickering faces.
I see my mother in my grand-daughter’s
eyes, leave us for a moment for the flames
lapping the remains of a stump—the call
from beyond that burns within us all—
she is drawn away. It is the coming back
to her mother’s lap, her bemused recognition
of going somewhere within white coals
beyond this half-circle of family
that I see my mother in her face
while the meat cooks. We talk, lift glasses
in the smoke that swirls undecidedly
around us, just out of reach of the flames.
Early tracks upon the morning frost,
someone will rise to stir the embers,
to rekindle conversation from cold night
hoping to keep the celebration alive.
WPC(2) — “Warmth”
Posted in Photographs, Poems 2014
Tagged celebration, Ceremony, Christmas, Drought, Dry Creek, Fire, photographs, poetry, rain, water, weather, weekly-photo-challenge