Friday, November 23, 2012

Green Shutters

Painting the green today, the luxuriance of hemlock,
pine – oh, the dying pine below, from
that harsh lightning of August.
Painting, thickness of green against log,
Far from the sweet white cottages of
or Natchez.
But close enough to live on a ridge near those who fly
(the kestrel, Cooper’s, mocker)
who run
(the buck with fierce antlers)
who snoop
(the fox)
and guard fiercely from fighter jets and turkey buzzards and butterflies
(Great White). The green is peace here.

But the green of the door remembers other lovers without peace,
juleps near the river, in the hiding mountains,
grandmother tying the braid of a redheaded scamp in the cool of the porch
as we run to the creek, coming to a dead stop.
Shimmered, then scorched and torn.
The green of waiting for war, for summer storms, for the loss
of the one who doesn’t return.

The summer storm took green doors, shattered green shutters,
flattened Point Cadet where they had run after other wars,
where some talked in brogue of the far seas
and others in lilt of Asia,
they left to the new sea before dawn and came home after dark,
little ones jumping into hot waters, squealing on Sundays.
Shotgun house one and another,
many newly painted in greens, pinks and blues – but mostly whitewash.
Shrimp steam wafting before lunch, pusharatas and spring rolls a step apart.
Old windows reflecting oleanders.
Old men mending nets.

Then, gone.
The men, the windows, the oleanders, the squeals.

The green shutters.

                                        ~ Published in Artemis Journal 2013 ~


Pauline Conolly said...

Well Marjie, it is not often that I can say that I really really enjoyed someone's poems, but both of yours are wonderful. Green Shutters took me straight back to the Southern States, which i visted from Australia many years ago. Batman was profoundly moving. You are very gifted.

Marjie said...

Thanks so much, Pauline - actually, you should be able to find more than 2 on the blog - let me know if for some reason they have disappeared:)!

Unknown said...

The reality of this poem sinks deep into the heart. Very poignant! Thoroughly enjoyed this one! BTW Haven't 'seen' you around in awhile. Did you take a break from writing?

Marjie said...

Hi, Sharla. Yes, I was on a 'forced break' - life and travel. As the holidays wind down, I do have a couple of major writing projects in mind...Thanks for asking!