Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Prescience of the Cold

Optional soundtrack: Prescience    


East Bluff, winter, Devil's Lake, WI


Green Lake, WI

cold fires


these are the hard edges of enslaving waters,
voices unsinging the names—
strangled cries of ravens bubble up,
drowned in sea soil, black feathers soaked white

these are the cold uncertain flickers,
banked old spines of breakback islands—
crematoriums of untasted meal,
cracked by hungry rain

these are the fruits of winter,
snow cakes ringing as they strike—
unplowed ridged earth, sterile, dense,
burned and smitten by steam, night, cold

these are the harsh unfettered breezes,
knives howling like rape—
broken bones litter the plain,
black stones polished to pits of shadow

no hand unforgets them,
no lover’s touch, hesitant, igniting,
no living breath through stone mouth seeps,
no eye envisions them, tearing—
the hearth fires, they all go cold, untended,
the islanders, they all walked through these gates



Janesville, WI

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2 Comments:

Blogger Dave King said...

The photographs, particularly the two featuring the trees, are charming; the poem moving.

9:07 AM  
Blogger Art Durkee said...

Thanks, Dave.

The poem is a bit of an homage to one of my favorite 20th. C. poets, George Mackay Brown. He lived and wrote in the Orkneys his whole life, except fro schooling Edniburgh.

I just got back from a night of camping and a day of photography at Devil's Lake. The fall colors were truly stunning.

10:13 PM  

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