2011 Poems

September

thru

  December

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m pointing at you!            Print this poem only

 

You there standing in the shadow

of that big mistake

you the quarterback who just threw

your third interception

you the father kicking yourself

for being so nasty to your son

who just dropped the milk.

 

You fill in the blank.

 

Where did you learn

to love being stuck in the mud

of your every mistake

so rutted

you get a perverse pleasure

in that brown vapor

unable to draw a full breath?

 

You fill in the blank.

 

Maybe you need to go back

to kindergarten

where learning is fun

and each goof brings a giggle

a flag waving or a friend saying

here's something else

to learn.

 

You fill in the blank.

 

Can you leave those clotted boots in the mud

nod at your flub

step out looking around

for the next chance

to try something new

to be kind to those who err

especially you?

 

I'm pointing at me.

 

Written 10-9-11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Measure of Light          Print this poem only

 

This dark path is large in my past.

An anchor

gargantuan

rust-crusted and scarred

dropped from my bobbing boat

falls too many fathoms

for my rope.

My shaking vessel lurches,

about  to founder.

 

From the far reaches,

a deep drum, a distant boom

in my inner ear

tries to wake me.

 

Umber shadows

black oaks arise from the earth

dark bodies lean toward my path

dripping fingers

pointing down as if to say:

 

Pause here a moment.

Bring your scattered mind

back to this place

where you ran

where you began.

 

Linger here.

Feel the warm mud

folding around your feet

sink into your roots.

 

Find here the measure of light

you’ve been seeking.

 

 

Author’s Note:  This poem is inspired by the George Rodrigue painting, The Baton Rouge Oak,  pictured above.  According to Wendy Rodrigue in her blog Musings of an Artist’s Wife, as Rodrigue was seeking his own unique artistic expression, he started painting trees and landscapes from his native Cajun Louisiana.  He was asked about this painting and its name, and he said that, “it was the tree and its relationship to its surroundings that stood out to him.” 

 

When I first saw this painting on Wendy’s wonderful blog, it was as if it reached out from the computer screen and took hold in my heart.  I had to write a poem about it.  As I looked at the painting and noted some of its details, its meaning for my own journey emerged in this poem.  I was born in Baton Rouge and my roots go deep into southern Louisiana where my mother (Inez Durand Currier) was born and raised and where many of my cousins now live and love. 

 

I am grateful to George and Wendy Rodrigue for helping me navigate the path from my past to my present and into the light and for their permission to use this image here. 

 

Written 11-8-11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poor Sparrows          Print this poem only          

 

It is cold and bleak today

rain soaked.

Poor birds,

so afraid and alert.

 

          the feeder restocked with seed

          what a feast

          good day to be a sparrow

          poor thing behind the glaze

          cooped and confined

          his gaze so empty of flight

 

But what is being inside on this cold day?

 

Secure in this heated space?

 

The cold corners.

The dark passages

like lava tubes once alive with fire

now empty and echoing

in shallow breaths

thudding of wounds

still raw with feeling.

 

Not so good

being inside.

 

Written 12-27-11      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stalactites          Print this poem only

 

His ties hang in his closet

stalactites made drip by drip

of dressing, driving, thriving

in the rooms where he made his mark.

 

Casting with penlights in the dark

opening his mouth

to open their minds.

Dreaming drip by drip
some residue would pass

into their futures.

 

Now in the eye of his mind

he finds clear plastic boxes

filled with books and files.

Titles of his miles

already dust

being swept away by the custodians

of the next generation.

 

He wanders in the haze

of his afterward days

bumping into tables

losing his balance

melting into softness

of easy chairs

in the downstairs

of his next walkabout.

 

Through the marsh of his anger

he searches for that one thing

of import to talk about

a poem, a pear,

a berry for the ear

of someone

who hears

and speaks

the years

 

of his language.

 

Author’s Note: I retired from 40 years of teaching on 8-31-11

Written 9-14-11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To Forget          Print this poem only

 

“Your poem may mean something to you

but it doesn’t mean anything to me.”

 

At first I reasoned it away:

It doesn’t rhyme so he doesn’t get it

 

but later it appeared as a sting

its venom circulating, percolating

 

the usual suspects in play:

“That thoughtless clod!” “Ignorant bastard.”

 

It was a hook lodged inside my darkness

each rumbling recall pulling me under.

 

Then I remembered what grandma said:

“Some things are best forgotten.”

 

This was a rock to drop off the cliff

into that fine fading mist of my memory.

 

The next time I rehearse a hurt

and feel the heat rising, maybe I’ll remember

 

to forget.

 

"To Forget," Copyright  2011 by Glenn Currier

Written 10-3-11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Waiter          Print this poem only

 

My fork is poised ,

hashbrowns and sausage

now oranged with yolk

wait for my first bite.

“Pancakes are cooking

sorry you have to wait.”

 

At the next-door table

her eyes move here and there

without focusing.

Hoping I won’t notice her two dumb guys

with their smart phones

ignoring her

as she speaks

sorry she has to wait.

 

At another table

he stands pen and pad in hand

trying to wait easy over their decision:

scrambled or omelet

coffee or milk

sausage or bacon

sorry he has to wait.

 

One of my great quests-

learning to be

in traffic

easy over

not roasting

in line for mine

 

not sorry

to be a waiter.

 

Written 10-3-11

 
2020 Copyright by Glenn Currier