It is now December, the land is silent, The woven webs no longer glisten with dew; Winter is in the making - fall has flew, South with the summer birds that came and went.
The north wind's chilly indictment's there to hold. The remorse for time and its diminished light. It is in the mind that's woven with sight, Torn from verdant summer, for the mirror of cold.
It is not the snow that's the poets page, The poem grows more fiercely than the wind; As the mind lashes out again and again. Romantic ramblings rose from rest to rage.
It is in this solitude, a syllable, Forms from leaves scraping across the frozen ground. The poet captures it in some sentence sound; Purity in his poem paged in parable.
He hears form from the wind and hissing grass, Of rattling leaves on trees becalmed in sleep; Reminds him his reticence he can't keep And puts to page his poem that comes to pass.
Love is Lifting
Love is lifting for you will discover. It is there for when you're in it you give, Its true essence to lend to your lover, And share it as long as you both shall live, Send it in a way that will find its mark, For it is a light that is always there, Let it light the shadows in the dark. Give it, let it be known, it's yours to share, For what it's worth, where it dwells in the heart, From back where it found you when it got its start.
The Lone Swan
The land rests in autumn’s glory,
The harbor sands whiter still.
Summer birds gone migratory,
One white swan sails through October’s chill.
Dried leaves litter the harbors hull,
The woodland paths all dry.
The sound of a far-off laughing gull
Out in the cloudless sky.
One loan swan was my count;
So why did my heart ache,
When to the sky she did mount,
And leave behind an empty lake.
The storm drives on the sails that hold,
The winds that roar a howling cold.
Waves thunder, roll upon the shore,
This faithful light’s been seen before.
Old guardian with watchful eye
To guide the ships that pass her by.
Through the dusky November sky,
Where clouds bloom in blue-black blossoms.
For there it loomed off in the cold distance,
Like some old steel-clad sentinel
Keeping a lonely vigil
From upon its stony perch.
For years and years to keep the watch
Over passing ships on moonless nights
To reassure the seasoned skipper
With hallowed beam of guiding light.
No keeper now to keep the place;
The guardian stands forsaken,
With empty rooms and broken glass
And laughing gulls on wave-washed stone.
A glowing eye still scans the sea,
No longer a shining savior —
A light to shine for no one now
Save for some artist or poet,
Looking for a muse amid the maelstrom.
Passport to Winter
Hints of autumn found in the frost,
On dried leaves, under matted clouds
Where rustling corn whispers farewell,
And noisy leaves of sleeping oaks
Hold their own to winds and hard sky.
Gone the nights with open windows
Where moonlight sifted through maples,
And a whippoorwill perched to sing.
To find winter sets in so fast,
One must have known her chill a long time.
Fields now lie fallow and stubbled.
Winter’s silent emptiness lurks,
Behind the warmth of autumn winds;
A raven alights on dusky wing,
Cold is the sorrow in its eyes.
The change of seasons, like the hands of time,
And like the wind that changes too,
To blow in some other bare place.
To find that first glitter of frost
On fallen leaves; then I for one,
Know the sadness when summer’s done.
Old Country Roads
To find solitude and repose
On country roads alone.
Through backwoods and overgrown fields
Of fading fence and piled stone.
Far away from the sounds of traffic,
And the people and the rush;
The only sound I wish to hear,
Is from a woodland thrush.
To travel on these rustic roads,
That few have ever been
Will lead me to some peaceful place
Where I’m invited in.
Overlooked by the passerby,
A road one rarely sees;
A place to find nature’s beauty,
Within the touching trees.
The heady fragrance of balsam and earth
Lies heavy in the mist of morning’s dew.
Treading down the old logger’s path
Where last years leaves leave a carpet, soggy black
And the glory of morning in its gold and green,
Become hues of life in the dawn of spring.
Something about a path makes us follow.
Somewhere in the distance a gull laughs,
The sound of wind-whipped surf sifts through trees.
To know the water is near and yet to keep
This easy stroll from racing to the shore,
Where water sparkles in the sun’s blue eye
And long green sedges bow to wind and wave.
Something about water sets the mind adrift.
From this driftwood strewn point at morning’s edge,
Is where you come to find yourself exposed
To wind, water, and sky. The shattered light
From morning’s sun splits the scud of low clouds,
And everything becomes so much more clear;
You find all that is left is the earth and sky.
Something about the sky sets your spirit free.
Only then can we teach are eyes to see
And our ears to hear and in the end,
We come to find how body from spirit
Slowly does unwind, until we are pure
And all that is left behind is driftwood
Scattered upon the wind washed grassy shore.
Something about eternity we must follow.
The Hay Rake
Autumn winds sweep across a fallow field;
A hay rake, rusted, leans with planted wheel
(For goldenrod had tried but not concealed)
Now falls deeper into time and seasons.
Sapling oaks fence it in away from the shed,
Dried leaves have gone the way of the sparrow
And winter brews upon the brow.
The spring has gone and summer dies
In a meadow of fading hue,
For the blackbird no longer flies
Where white crowned daisies once had grew.
Autumn creeps in, summer has passed
Leaving only a forsaken silence,
And empty nests and dried brown grass;
The cricket’s cadence soon relents.
A winter’s chill is drawing near
To sweep the land with wind and snow.
What emptiness when they’re not here,
The summer bird’s that had to go.
To find solace in sleep of trees,
And yet to know and have to believe
That with every warm summer breeze,
There must be a cold winter’s eve.
The Lady Slipper
Along the wooded path I found,
Behind a shroud of fern
Orchids of gold bloom from the ground,
For a summer’s sojourn.
Amidst the moss and tender root,
A slipper made of gold
Custom fit for a ferries foot,
Or so I’ve once been told.
So for whatever one believes,
To find some here or there,
Under a canopy of leaves —
Alone or in a pair.
Enjoy them in their short-lived show,
For it took years for them to grow.
Summer Side of Life
I used to think as birds take wing
They’d sing through life, so why can’t we?
To learn from this—you begin to see
It’s a simple thing in an offering.
So I’ll take some clouds—I’ll take some rain
To enjoy the warmth when the sun shines again.
After April showers relent
And warm winds sweep away the clouds,
I come to find my garden birds
And all their song and cadences
Become my song in that large green day.
The snow that once held me in,
Has nothing on me now and falls
Victim to spring: her hammered rains
And faithful sun; my spirit awakes.
To see that first robin return,
Reminds me of my own arrival.
The essence of spring — I call it my peace:
The leaf emerging, pale and green,
A thrush in song within the woods,
The smell of earth on easy breeze.
I’ve found what’s already found me.
Feather in the Wind
Upon the wind-whipped shore there lies
Scattered bones from long ago trees.
He finds a feather in the sand,
No longer on a gull that flies.
A plaguing thought he can’t appease,
Where one goes when the body dies?
He holds this feather to the sea,
In gasping winds that try to tear
And strip away his only key;
Was it the gull or sea he heard,
Or just the winds allegory?
On sandy shores and weathered wood,
Before the surf, alone he stood;
And from his hands the feather flew,
To Angels waiting above green waves.
He watched the feather go, and knew
That we were never meant for graves.
Morning Has Broken
I watch the morning sun light up the leaves,
Oh how it makes me smile.
I felt at ease amongst the touching trees,
I walk a country mile.
The meadow glows in shrouds of silver mist
A lark begins to sing.
Clover blankets the fields in amethyst;
I hear a cowbell ring.
A gentle sound to ring in the new day;
Somewhere over the hills — not far away.
Around and around she weaves the rings,
Labyrinths of silk, in time she’s spun.
To trap her meal in sticky strings
She now can rest – her work is done.
Morning brushes the silky web
With a soft sweep of mist and dew,
Like silver pearls around a thread
In early light of amber hue.
What splendor for something so small,
To knit her silk before first light.
To the spider, it was nothing at all
A mere task of labor, spun in the night.
A Country Church
An old country church and a winter’s day,
Empty, disused; a silent steeple bell
Tarnished by time calls no one now to pray;
A north wind rattles the loose stain-glass pane.
Christ still hangs on the cobwebbed wall,
Looking down upon the empty pews;
The flocks have fled, no preacher here to call
To save a soul, or send home the dead.
Outside, a dried balsam-bough Christmas wreath,
Clings to a rusty nail, above the door;
Left behind for the old church to bequeath
To the cold wind that pays no offering.
And out across the way, a cemetery
Bears a few forsaken headstones.
A final rest beneath a plastic daisy,
That winter’s distant sun has left to bloom.
Poetry & photos by Trygvie Jensen (c) 2007
A broken porch clings to an empty house,
A weathered chair is left to rock in winds
That sweep across a sun-stained floor.
Curtains frayed, tattered (swaying ghosts
In dark glassless panes) a strange
Sound of silence, save for brooding sparrows
That bicker and mass in the open eaves.
The half-opened gate sports a welcome sign.
A Gate… To keep the old house in?
Unhinged from time, now hinged with vines,
Clematis, wild grape, weaves the wrought iron;
From where poor father kicked mud from his boots.
A gate that can do nothing more, save for
A stable perch for wren or finch.
Last years leaves now left to fallen snow
That blankets them as nature will allow;
A wind arose and forced the trees to bow—
A winter storm has come to blow.
Birds are silent in their winter sleep,
Which lends me thoughts of my own rest,
Fore their repose, I must detest
On this cold dark night; her cold to keep
And keep me in my sheltered place,
For winter lingers outside my door.
The wind chime rings, this song I’ve heard before,
When a summer breeze caressed my face.
I look out at my empty porch
And long for the return of spring,
When summer birds, again will sing;
But the storm still burns cold its chilly torch.
In the darkest evening of the year
Where wind and snow are falling fast.
A storm is just storm it cannot last,
And so I crank the heat and drink my beer.
The Drive Home
As the sun slipped into the distant trees,
The night found its way into me,
Colorful hues lingered in the eclipsing gloaming,
Bringing on a sadness of a day that’s done.
The road seemed long and reflective.
I fell into memories, well into my mind.
Reflections are resplendent, but far behind.
All those glimpse gone to yesterday;
Friends, lovers, visions of youth longing to linger,
Of a place and time I strain to see.
The setting sun, how it settles and soothes
All those thoughts and times out of season.
In the mirror, I glance back into the darkness,
You were not there.
Ahead, I looked to the last colorful hues,
Held high in the waning night sky.
This is the color I’d like for my palette,
To paint my tomorrow in a heady hue.
The road narrowed into the night;
The car’s headlights held limited light.
I now consigned to my myriad of thoughts,
While the tires hummed a hypnotic tune.
Why do my thoughts return to memories?
I slide in a cd—a song to remind me,
Of a time we made glances in the mirror,
Of something so simple as a smile,
You held so strongly in your eyes—
Indelible and bright. I held you close in my thoughts.
I looked again in the rear view mirror,
But your eyes were not there to meet mine.
I drove on into the darkness.
Is there any direction without love?
Is there any love without direction?
Without the ones who give you direction?
Track four was always ours, and it
Resounded in the dark—the song—our song.
I listened, for I thought I heard you,
Where was the whisper, I longed to hear?
I realized I was going home alone.
.I heard it in the Wind
The wind has blown the memory of summer away,
The last leaf that clung to fall has fallen.
And farewells are a sad hanging on to remembrances,
Of all that was warm of a youthful yesterday.
I’ve heard that wind before—the calling,
And the changes of the seasons, the passing of time,
Sussarence of goodbye through swaying meadow grass,
And the barrenness that autumn is now exposing.
It is a coming on and a coming forth,
It is a silence and a portend to sleep,
That the cold winter wind likes to keep,
The silence of birds, as it blows from the north.
And what I think, the breathing of that wind
A moving of emotion, a time of change
That comes and goes in the silence of its own
To blow in some other bare place, within.
And in the far distance I heard the raven’s call for what it is;
And for the listener, who listens in silence
Which is now the sound of his own reticence
For the nothing that is there, and the nothing that is his.
For him, it was only the sound of evening—
The sound of the last song of meadow birds,
In the last of the lingering light.
Only this evening, he saw low in the sky,
The evening star, at the onset of autumn—
The star that in spring ruled the western horizon.
What had this star to do with the world it shone below,
With the darkening skies over the meadow,
Over the forest, over the bordering bogs?
There it was again in the autumn sky
As if it came back-as if life came back,
As if evening could always give solace
And the star comfort in some diminished light.
He thought he had this that he could love,
Like the evening sound and the song of things.
How the capricious night sky sparkled in silence.
From the middle of the meadow and mist
The odor of earth penetrated more deeply than any word,
There he touched his being
There as he is—he is.
My Immortal Flower
He walks in solitude and has no fear,
The sun and moon and stars keep pace with him
The doorway to freedom he knows is near;
And time to him grows so beautifully dim.
With each eager tread, be it fast or slow,
Leaving yesterday’s hushed and sacred hour
For tomorrow’s path to surely follow;
And the beauty of his white immortal flower.
The angels in heaven smile above him.
He smiles and knows heaven awaits his soul;
He listens to the leaves rattle on the limb
One star at dusk will yield his longing goal.
He follows his future in the distance
Leaving memories made of places he’s been
And the sorrow he sows in acceptance.
In gloaming, he knows the sun shines again.
He lives to learn, where the road’s his story
For all he suffers is for his own sake
To emulate in God’s divine glory-
All’s forgiven in his glorious wake.
He walks in beauty in the shade of night
In his pocket, he holds a polished stone-
A son’s gift, when rubbed brings luck to light.
He walks in solitude, yet knows he’s not alone.
He’ll seek tomorrow’s hushed and sacred hour,
And the beauty of his white immortal flower.
She both dug and despised the night,
Alone in her poster-plastered room
She stands near the window
Looking out through the darkness of the frame,
She sees her lonely image.
And many miles away he is in his own room,
Waits for a call—a desperate stare at his phone;
A call he may know will never come.
His own image reflects a loneliness,
In a darkened window frame
Their pains of the past plague them
Obscuring their longing for love and desire.
Their darkened windows paint a reflection
Of some kind of self portrait of want.
In looking at herself, she tries to see beyond herself.
And she dreams of her lover
Beyond the darkened window frame;
Could her lover see her?
In such quiet desperation?
The other: a young man
Admiring a memory of a girl,
He hopelessly desired.
A girl he remembered from a life
That was not his anymore.
Given their blindness for hope,
Their self-possession of doubt and despair;
They both look to both sides of the glass,
And wonder if there is a future in it?
Was it two people poised for destiny?
Or was it a lover’s paradox hidden in parable
Of two trying to become one,
But yet remain two?
Time cannot stop for wanting to return to yesterday,
The past is just a lesson to learn for tomorrow.
The day is bronzed and bright.
The summer days will be coming on.
The verdant ripeness of growing leaves,
The earth, fresh and fragrant in the
Spices of a fair and balmy breeze.
Every thread of spring is at last unwoven,
And the last patch of snow dissolved,
From an earth-warmed washing of wind,
Somewhere in the great foyer of spring,
I welcome back all its Illustrious green:
The sunlight dancing in the new leaves;
The croaking crane’s cacophony in the far field;
A hawk indolently riding a thermal;
Wren and catbird flitting in the thickets
Of lavender lilacs lined with yellow daffodils.
A bird, small as a leaf sings in the first light—
I find a song in myself in that large green day
And grandeur that God gave us as a gift.
The light of spring—the warmth it brings,
Renews my take on so many things;
I’m as light as air—I am just there.
Dog Day Afternoon
I came to the edge of a sun-splashed meadow
Of a now late August afternoon.
Within—looking out from the darkened woods.
Where August breezed in with its sultry-breath;
The buzz of cicadas permeated the heavy air
In an emphatic cacophony cadence;
Far away—so long from autumn’s becalming silence.
The freshly cut hay in the far meadow,
Drew fresh and sweet on the fair breeze.
I remained in the cool shadowy-shade,
Under the verdant canopy of the touching trees;
Juxtaposed to the meadow, consumed
By painted butterflies and buzzing bees.
Something about a mid-summer afternoon,
Where time seems to slow and stumble;
The passing of June now dialed in to August’s tune;
Of meadow lark and a song sparrow’s ensemble
Somewhere between the languished morning
And the indifference to the coming night.
(Interspersions of time, tasks, and light).
I rested on the flat field stones of the fence line,
And watched the blooming cumulous mount.
The meadow seemed to shimmer and dance
Like wavering apparitions in the heavy air
Where finches flit and fly in fancy flight
And the dappled haze of golden rod
In the fields of green and hazy gold.
Reminds that the summer hues are to hold
And the autumn days are drawing near,
When the meadows fade to russet and brown,
Under matted clouds and hard sky.
But, for now, I hear summer in the winds sigh.
The light softens and slips into long shadows
And I moved on along a grassy road,
As the leaves gently rattled overhead.
It occurred to me, I really had no other place to be.
It is her warmth and wondering,
That is the warmth and memory of her.
It is not that there is any image in the air,
Nor a beginning nor an end to her love.
It is the fulfilling feeling of her touch
That burns me with a brushing of desire—
And a yearning of all the abundance of being,
More beautiful for all that she is to me;
Because she is the embodiment of purity,
Bearing a fragrance like a summer field.
There is something about her I’m a part of—
When I think of her, I think of love.
I saw her as a blossom on a stem,
Before the sunrise of a new day.
I smelled the fragrance of the essence of her—
She made me and loved me in my dream.
A dream of a beautiful girl I always knew,
How could I ever want to awake.
I realized then, the form my waking would take.
She is the girl dreams are made from.
She came to me opened armed every night—
She came in on the flowing wind.
I would watch her there between me and the moon.
I touched her shadow when the light delayed,
And when I turned away, her shadow stayed.
A bird sang high up in a sycamore tree;
She loved its song that carried on the wind—
She loved the wind, because the wind loved me.
Love is not love until it is truly felt,
And yet I thought is love vulnerable,
Could it be that it is only found in dreams?
From my mind that remembers a deeper sleep,
Of that girl who forms from a shadow’s sweep.
It was this same dock twenty years ago
We witnessed the young boys life slip away.
The moon mirrored in his open lifeless eyes
As the lake smoothed over where we pulled him.
How swift an unannounced death came that night,
Washing over us like some sleight of hand.
His drowned face we failed to make breathe again,
And for a moment the lake fell silent,
Save for a loon laughing in the still night.
Lost Lake was where we’d go every Friday
To watch the northern lights dance in emerald waves
And swim through the lukewarm darkness of night.
The new kid, we called slim, leaped from a birch;
Pierced the water clean; twelve rippled rings
Spread out from where he broke the moon in two.
Twelve rings—one for each year of his life.
There is beauty on the shore
And rapture on the wind.
There’s a song in Nature,
Leaving me wanting more.
Gentle waves journey in,
A simple serenade
From the seas timeless score,
The wind sifts through the pines,
And aspen’s rattling din,
Amid nature’s confines;
Where it restores my soul,
And I’m invited in.
Where grassy meadows roll
Across the morning dew
Sun-washed in daisy haze;
Where songbirds sing for you.
The sun was but a rose,
I rose to greet it there.
Forever on it goes.
Through the misty morning air.
A light breeze did stir,
The leaves of touching trees,
I thought that I heard her
Whispering in the breeze.
Walking home one cold winter night,
Amidst the dark and falling snow;
A warm comfort came over me,
When I saw my window’s rosy glow.
I saw my lover there inside,
Through the glowing curtain lace,
Standing beside the fireplace,
Her slender form and simple grace.
Caught out in the winter wind
(Concerned only with snow and ice)
I’ve had enough of winter walks,
Her warm embrace would now suffice.
And when I crossed that threshold,
Leaving behind the dark and cold;
I so fondly held my lady,
For whom so long I wished to hold.
The Woodcutters Dream
The cabin door groaned on rusting hinges,
As he crossed the threshold into a world of white.
The clank of the metal latch upon closing,
Set his hanging doorbells to gently ring.
Squinting from the new fallen snow so bright,
He thought to himself, it’s a cold morning alright.
The familiar feel of his axe handle,
Fit ever so tightly into his buckskin glove.
He turned his shoulder to the wind so swift,
That swirled the snow in a great upward lift.
The back forty woods, he could only think of,
To hear his axe sing, for him this was love.
He set a pace only the snow would allow,
And gave a snug pull to his red-flanneled hood.
The rising sun warmed his well-seasoned face,
Though the wind carried a chill to hurry his pace;
To the shelter of the back forty wood,
He thought, for there my axe may do some good.
The woods were silent, save for a Blue Jay’s call,
And the crunch of snow with each eager tread.
Shadows from the trees pin-stripped the ground,
Swaying slowly on the snow with no sound.
The dawn sky slipped out of her dazzling red,
While a few lingering leaves rattled overhead.
He arrived at the woodpile as he did before,
To his stacks of oak piled four by four by eight.
Upon an old hardened hickory stump, he left sit,
A well-seasoned log waiting to be split.
A deep breath of air, his lungs did inflate,
And the oak shattered from the ax heads weight.
Great blocks of oak were split through the core,
By the strength in his shoulders and the good of his back;
The steam from his breath clouded the cold winter air,
And formed ice crystals on his red mustache hair.
The sound of axe in wood, pierced the silence with a crack,
Stirred-up memories of life as a young lumberjack.
The forest he loved to be, as well he should,
Most of his life was spent amongst the trees,
A kindred spirit of the earth and land;
A task he loved with his old axe in hand.
To cut and split the hardened oak with ease,
As wood lay scattered all round his knees.
The late afternoon shadows faded in the woods,
And the approaching clouds hinted more snow.
He set his axe down to watch a crow take flight,
And thought, best head back before day turns to night.