Thursday, December 22, 2016


Oncoming rain.
Overhead a
Herd of clouds sails
From sunset and
Tree frogs sound
Like castanets.
West creek curve
Echoes a chance bit
Of blue between billows.
Something in me knows
Echoes and chance.
It sways me, I move.
Madam Earth, I believe
We have a dance.


Sunday, December 4, 2016

Travertine Revisited

When my longtime friend, Willie, read this poem 8 years ago, he wrote a comment that was a poem in itself and joined the one I wrote: "Why does this remind me of some of your... poems from some 40 years ago? Perhaps it's that focusing down through layers and layers of existence to what turns out to be the pebble."

Layers and layers of limestone sediment and time is pretty much what travertine is. But there's more. There's light and life and ages snagged in this mineral that is also a recording mechanism. You take old limestone and polish it right in a rockgrinder and you get snapshots of old forests --and, in imagination, scenes of prehistoric life. My favorite bit of travertine got doodled again last year and recently used in another blog. Here is the rock (upper left), with its real scene of million year-old tree trunks in it, and my doodle of imagined dancers below.

Here is the poem:


Eyes of creatures long gone
And what they saw are
Caught under crystal
From solution--
Light of other days compressed
Into stone, deposited
Here and there--
Their tongues lapping
At the surface of waters
Long since turned
To desert.
Here, amid red,
Green, yellow are
Black veins in
Travertine that tell
Of seas, rivers, lakes
Come and gone,
Prairies carbonized.
There is much to read
In a pebble.