Sunday, May 24, 2015

Where Apple Trees Are Blooming...

The cannons cease and the darkness falls,
And those fluttering things are men. Edgar A. Guest

Phoenix Rising invites us to use another poets words to inspire our own. 

The orchard is a palace where the apple trees are blooming
Nature fulfills promises that only spring can keep
Cold autumnal deathbeds after winter's icy grooming
Spawns a metamorphosis where fields of flowers sleep

I stroll the early morning where the lilacs are adorning
Twigs that seemed but lifeless sprigs before awakening
Our oohs and aahs and the applause of tongue-tied beggar-barons
Contentment's luxury is free and not a purchased Thing

...And I can't help but think of those who fled with almost nothing
Save the clothes upon their backs and children in their arms
Never mind that skies are kind and apple trees are blooming
Evil has no season;bent on ugliness that harms

Here among the song of birds and freedom bought with bodies
Hope is juxtaposed like spring, with suffering and death 
And mingled with the virgin hues of greens and blues, gold, purple
Runs the blood of fallen comrades yielding their last breath

The cannons cease and the darkness falls and those fluttering things are men
And boys and girls that will not see another spring again


Lest We Forget...

Easy Service
When an empty sleeve or a sightless eye
Or a legless form I see,
I breathe my thanks to my God on High
For His watchful care o'er me.
And I say to myself, as the cripple goes
Half stumbling on his way:
I may brag and boast, but that brother knows
Why the old flag floats to-day.

I think as I sit in my cozy den
Puffing one of my many pipes
That I've served with all of my fellow men
The glorious Stars and Stripes.
Then I see a troop in the faded blue
And a few in the dusty gray,
And I have to laugh at the deeds I do
For the flag that floats to-day.

I see men tangled in pointed wire,
The sport of the blazing sun,
Mangled and maimed by a leaden fire
As the tides of battle run,
And I fancy I hear their piteous calls
For merciful death, and then
The cannons cease and the darkness falls,
And those fluttering things are men.

Out there in the night they beg for death,
Yet the Reaper spurns their cries,
And it seems his jest to leave them breath
For their pitiful pleas and sighs.
And I am here in my cosy room
In touch with the joys of life,
I am miles away from the fields of doom
And the gory scenes of strife.

I never have vainly called for aid,
Nor suffered real pangs of thirst,
I have marched with life in its best parade
And never have seen its worst.
In the flowers of ease I have ever basked,
And I think as the Flag I see
How much of service from some it's asked,
How little of toil from me.
Edgar Albert Guest :

Daylight Slips Where Air Eclipses Time's Ellipses...

Daylight slips where air eclipses Time’s ellipses ethereal
Sky-lines etched like charcoal sketches stretch blue shadows long until
Darkness covers loners, lovers; morrow hovers soft, aloft
Where the charter of an hour never barters with the clock

Midnight’s morrow with its sorrow none can borrow of its ilk
Dew and dust anoints the Must that God appoints to us; Time’s silk
Like an ocean in slow-motion washes over twilight’s world
Daylight slips, darkness eclipses the ellipses dawn unfurled

Morning offers merchants, scoffers, beggars, coffers fresh, unfilled
In the quiet echoes riot where the dark of night has stilled
Tussles with the hustle-bustle rubric of Time’s gossamer
Daylight slips where the eclipse of past, present and future blur

© Janet Martin

Saturday, May 23, 2015

'May' Poets

Sometimes I leave a poem out
To share with them
They grunt a response
To let me know
They read it
…sort of
Then ask
‘What’s for supper?’

Sometimes I point out
The shapes of leaves
New born, etched
On May’s dusk
They nod and
Continue discussing
‘Really good song by so-and-so’

Sometimes they make
My heart stop
Right there
In the middle
Of Ordinary
As they say, ‘look Mom,
Look at the way the sun hits those trees,
Isn’t it cool?’

© Janet Martin

The Person that We Are...

I can almost here our bare feet splashing through the dust, dashing from beyond the tree-line in the photo below,  to the top of this hill to get a closer count of the freight train cars, then ambling back the way we came, arguing about how many there were...Those children and that railway are long gone.(back then this road was silky dust in the sun and slippery mud in the rain before it became a graveled and busier through-way for farmers.)
Was it not farther than this?! 
I feel like a stranger standing on the echoes of Then. It seemed like a world away when mother's permission allowed us to 'walk to the little tree or the creek,(it still sleeps in that dip) for the best peanut-butter and soda-cracker picnics known to little girls:)

We come from where we’ve been
And whether near or far
Life shapes through what we’ve done and seen
The person that we are

The person that we are
Is ever subject to
The highs and lows that jive and spar
To shape our points of view

To shape our point-of-views
We draw from difference
For I have never worn your shoes
Or your experience

For your experience
And mine, the done-and-seen
Patterns pursuit and consequence
We come from where we’ve been

We come from where we’ve been
And where we’ve been thus far
Creates from life’s gray-gold-blue-green
The person that we are

© Janet Martin

…but no matter where we’ve been, we began in the hands of our Creator and we will end in the hand of our Creator. 
This little ‘in-between’ shaping the person that we are, is never very far from Him. 
God’s love for all of us is our common birthmark, for from Him, through Him and for Him are all things.To him be the glory forever! Amen.

What you see of me is the shape of my skin
God and me see the person within
No matter what happens, He is never far
From the becoming of who we are 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Love Now!

Love now, for who knows how many todays we still have left
Before we bow our heads to mourn upon a grave, bereft

Love now; there is no guarantee beyond it save this, death
Thus we should love each other with each precious, gifted breath

Love now, do not hold back what we are able to out-pour
For even now death comes a-stealing to somebody’s door

Love now, tomorrow might be too late to state the unsaid
When all that we have left of love are memories we’ve made

© Janet Martin

My mother-in-law lost a dear friend and neighbor today; a mother, grandmother, great-grandmother. She touched oh, so many lives in her lifetime and will be dearly missed. We should look around and love now for now is all we have. 
I remember my Grandmother often cautioning her grandchildren 'the old will die but the young can die' reminding us to value life and love and to be ready when That Last Awesome Call comes.