First light frosting the tree line, and I close the door
On the rest of the house and leave the need for sleep
To others. At such an hour, with dark still lingering,
The stars blown apart and a waning moon near vanishing,
I’ve become too well acquainted with the dark dialect
Of slush and wallop from this stretch of shoreline, the
Pensive coo of mourning doves, the distant slap and
Rhythmic carry of a steam train and even the scuffling
Of a lone, metal bucket listlessly pushed back and
Forth across loose gravel by a counterfeit wind.
of wild privet permeates the path
That dips with the contour of the earth and I,
Too, quickly leap past the bittersweet fragrance,
Awaiting the weightless lifting of my feet from
Luminous clay and the climbing out of my body,
But this day provides for a hapless harvest and
Amplifies the emptiness, shrinking to something
Less than healing. Returning home to houses
Huddled around the harbor, I can feel the earth’s
Leaning towards another season as I take in the
The clattering of plates, the metallic rasp of silver-
Ware being gathered up or placed down and the
Pungency of coffee with threads of cinnamon –
The simpler luxuries of everyday life that can
Somehow make the heart whole again if only
These much-mended eyes could learn to listen.
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A native of Connecticut, John’s professional career has been dedicated to environmental stewardship and conservation. In the Lilac Hour, his first volume of poems, was published in fall 2020 by Antrim House and is available on Amazon. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous literary journals, including River Heron, Euonia, Sheepshead, Moria, Willawaw, Writers Shed, and The French Literary Review. He is also a two-time nominee for the 2021 Pushcart Prize.
John and his wife, Debra, live on the Connecticut shoreline and they enjoy travel, kayaking, and spending time with friends and family. John has a life-long passion for art, music, and all things chocolate.
You may follow John on Instagram.