Thursday, December 14, 2017

"Glory" by Terri Lynn Cummings

Terri Lynn Cummings 

Once, a garden, graceful as a maiden
ornamented a palace. Laughter 
braided garlands, breeze whispered 
through trees like a low, winter fire

All surrendered to the slow
autumn burn, clearing land 
for old and new 

Black branches waved sparklers
of leaves—brilliant thatches of
orange, red, yellow dripping
molten onto dull patches of grass

Maple tree dropped large, flat notes
of summer onto a table of earth 
Leaving! they declared, waltzing 

into a grove of oaks multiplying 
nightfall. Shadows stretched one limb
to another in greeting, spoke of fasts
and long, frantic prayers for an early spring

Dogs barked, demanding to be let inside 
Noise raced over night’s cold air
yet stars stayed silent as ancestors

Beyond the garden glimmers home 
Laughter braids garlands
breeze whispers through trees 
like a low, winter fire

All surrenders to the slow 
autumn burn, clearing land
for old and new

Poet’s Notes:  I had looked out the window to this scene. How moving the march from fall to winter and back! The loss of a nephew made this fall particularly poignant—a painful reminder that nothing stays the same except change. Yet, over the years, I learned loss turns to light and dark again, like the seasons. In writing this poem, I looked outward, inward, and outward again. Until I wrote these notes, I had not realized my poem was a metaphor for personal loss.

Editor’s Note:  This will be the last we hear from Terri for a little while.  She has requested and been granted a leave of absence from her Frequent Contributor commitment.  It will be a joy to welcome her back when she is ready. 

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