2 Poems up at Strong Verse (2010)

Catching up on referencing some of my earlier published work — “The Secret to Befriending Men” and “The Babel Tree” first appeared up at Strong Verse in 2010. Thank you, Strong Verse!

The Secret to Befriending Men

Singsong softly,
moving slowly,
downturned eyes a comfort;
Only the guileless lure —
a whispering croon
unmasked in purpose —
will call him to you.

And when he shows himself,
don’t hold him, but welcome him, loosely —
he’ll come at first by starts
to the acorn meat
crumbling golden in your marble palm,
the cutting shell all gone.

Be true and gentlepatient —
for now he’s downwind, watching.
You can’t smell him,
but he’s close.

 

The Babel Tree

A grisled tree sits on the spot you were once,
a requiem in the choreography of its limbs.
Leaves like questions lift and pluck at the sky.

I whistle —
the dog comes,
loping out of the long grass,
brown like a gnome and suddenly
          I am a sprite of the wood,
          still and small against the forest
          of this tombstone oak, and
          every runnel in the bark spells
          a message in some glyphic language
          I never learned but half-remember.
          And I wonder,
          if I whistle for you,
          will you awaken
          and come loping
          out of the long grass, too,
          no beckoned dog,
          but a homeward, homesick man
          with verbless heart and
          fairy-ring eyes?