Branches, black bones of November
damp against putty sky;
maple, basswood, poplar, ash;
bleak sisterhood against the whisper
tasted, of cold, of snow.
Heaven’s refugees evacuate, strident in angles;
songbird, starling, grackle, goose;
waiting, clustered velvet on barren
maple fingers or queued upon
hydro-electric cables watching
the road or the stubble-strewn fields,
witticisms growing frantic
before spreading their shield before the sun
or razor-like splitting the sky;
strangers and exiles on the wing, inhaling and
exhaling some promise not yet received.
To a greener lighter feast on
forest, plain, island, coast
perhaps I too should flee:
instead of lingering here in damp,
sullen winds, with my freezer lid
closed against the flurry of a
white Christmas, my ripened stacks
of wood meekly awaiting, my snowblower
augers starving on the concrete, my winter
Bridgestones on their wheels:
or am I bravely holding out for homecoming?
for the first robins dueling
at the borders of the forest;
for the blackbirds and their frenetic
scarlet signals at the roads edge;
for the cardinal to find its voice
and sing, brightly but unseen.
Some words from the poet:
This poem is an attempt at unsentimental reflection about the beauty and bentness of creation, and ourselves—inspired by my least favourite month, November.
Roger Biehn is a corporate controller and part time poet.