Foxes and Magnolias

Poetry for keepsakes, for longing, for letting go.

Beets

There’s something about the fall that reminds me

I loved once,

that I was loved.

 

An isometric sinking and lifting-

the chest, leaves, sun.

 

 

I remember loving you then, in this season-

(fall of 2010, ’11, ’12, ’13.

It started to get so hard in 2014,

I’m not going to pretend I didn’t love you though

then, too.

 

We just weren’t loving each other well,

in the way we needed

to feel well,

to be well.)

 

There’s a sweetness behind it – fall, love-

which can only be known by including pain.

Like the way leaves die in such beauty-

moving through so many colors before

dancing to its grave.

 

I sat down to write of beets-

the benefits of and recipes

for high school students in Home Ec. classes

(it’s not called that any more,

did you know?

Now: Family and Consumer Science).

 

And here I am, writing of you

again

in my favorite season.

Like This

Like you would with the fuzz on a peach

by rolling your fingers over it, your thumb-

notice it.

 

Allow your fingers to round

over where it rounds

and sink

into the spaces where depressions have been formed.

 

When encountering tender spots, treat them tenderly.

 

Notice the varied shades-

how the marigold flesh

delicately turns blush and

into crimson.

 

Then notice it this way: with your mouth-

the way it feels against your lips,

your tongue.

Slowly work circles around the pit

until eventually

that’s all that’s left of it.

 

And for a moment longer than you might think needed,

just be still.

There.

With it.

 

Languidly pull your mouth away

to keep the juice from

dripping over you.

Taste it one last time-

the ripened, sweet juice.

My Experience of You

Soon after wearing glasses for the first time,

you posted a picture

of the moon,

when we saw it together-

almost full and cream, framed by the silhouette of flowered branches

in your front yard.

 

I said, look

 

you did as though you never had before,

you said,

I’ve never seen the moon this clear

before.

 

The picture is blurry,

the light bleeding from the moon

distorts the definition it held in the sky-

the overt edges of its rounding, the contrast,

the way a moon makes you feel when

taking a full breath beneath it.

 

Under the picture you wrote, “missing you”.

 

I want to keep this-

you seeing the moon for the first time,

me aside you

in your experience.

 

How do you make a souvenir

out of what is not tangible-

a photograph? a poem?

 

You are so real under the moon.

Did she find you, your lover?

I heard an owl in Medicine Bow,

hooting for its lover

last night,

 

sometimes one long

hooooooo,

others short and in pairs:

hoo, hoo.

 

Sad midnight songs

rolling through southern Wyoming hills,

softly.

Landscapes Between Us

Each year goes by like

another Wyoming hill.

 

Thought I’d call today,

to see if things are alright.

You said, “That’s all with me,

what’s with you?”

 

With all this time between us,

how is it that there’s nothing left to say?

Ed Templeton

You take pictures in the way

that Bukowski writes-

a raw grayscale sculpting

the ugly in everything that is beautiful,

and the opposite too-

the roses and the moths.

 

 

As far as I know, you never took a photo of sun

sliding over almost flawless skin on bare thighs

and dog shit drying and graying and crumbling in the heat

by her side

as the flies lope over it for breakfast.

He never wrote about it.

But in some ways, this is what you both do.

 

How do I explain this better?

You make everything real.

You make me want to love.

 

There is disillusion in your film,

in his words.

There is no fear in being ugly-

there wouldn’t be art

without it.

 

 

The dead moths and dust on windowsills,

the pink rosa moschatas in the spring and fall.

 

 

I wrote you to tell you this

and you thanked me.

But I was thanking you.

From Time to Time

Can you hear me calling on the heart phone?

Picking heart strings

like a midnight banjo.