Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Canvas - A Prelude - The beginning of the Laguna de Santa Rosa poem

I guess you could say I am obsessed with finishing this poem about the Laguna de Santa Rosa.  But, it is slow work.  This week we were to write a poem called "Canvas" in response to a stunning poem by francine j. harris called "Canvas".  Here is the re-written opening section of my poem, tentatively called "Canvas - A Prelude".

Canvas - A Prelude
Begin by  walking the cracked, chamomile- paths.  Let the path stretch across a wide stubbed field. 
Fill the air with the sounds of birds.  Fill the air with fat bees and the machine hum of insects.
Post appropriate markers that mark miles and decades but not the truth..

Try to contain the fissures of time in each quick step. When you walk under the lone oak that still, like the last visible star, constellates the field, smell smoke.  See the ghosts of the hundreds of other thick oak trunks that once crowded this space.  Hear their lost leaves rattling in the wind.

When you reach the man-made lake made to replace the natural lake, walk the perimeter.  The cattails that cage the floating bodies of seven white pelicans who have stopped here to rest on route back to the sea.

Look out across the drought dry field and imagine an chain of hundreds of lakes linking their way back to the sea.  Drain them for the good soil underneath. Fill them with soot.  Fill them again with feces and urine.  Cover what’s left of them in brambles. Get tangled in the sticky blood of berry juice.

And when you near the last of the water, the floating pontoon bridge, and the sounds of children playing baseball on the chalked diamond, let a red-snake T-bone the trail.

Let it open in you a wound that at it’s center is a mouth.

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