This morning, flowers cracked open
the earth’s brown shell. Spring
leaves spilled everywhere
though winter’s stern hand
could come down again at any moment
to break the delicate yolk
of a new bloom.
The crocus don’t see this as they chatter
beneath a cheerful petal of spring sky.
They ignore the air’s brisk arm
as they peer at their fresh stems, step
on the leftover fragments
of old leaves.
When the night wind twists them to pieces,
they will die like this: laughing,
tossing their brilliant heads
in the bitter air.
by Christine Klocek-Lim, first published on About.com.
Happy first day of spring.
Though supposedly, Friday is the day. Yeah, whatever. I’m still wearing a sweater, so…
Yes, it’s that time of year again. Several years ago, I wrote a poem that perfectly captures my sense of autumn. It’s an ekphrastic poem written after seeing a watercolor by Wolf Kahn that moved me greatly. Here is a link to the only version of the artwork I can find on the interwebz.
This poem was first published by About.com.
Strange Violet Behind Trees
—after Wolf Kahn
The house hides in dusk’s spangled purples.
It’s hard to see such colors, capricious
tones barely there once night has almost
sucked the light from the forest.
And silhouetted trees rear up
as I walk, interrupt the horizon,
their dry leaves muttering imprecations
in the magenta gleam of twilight.
You have gone and I must be careful:
the path has faded to mere shadow
and I can no longer understand
the exuberance of a leaf twisting
in the breeze. How does autumn tangle
everything so elegantly, as when crimson
replaces the decorous sheen of green?
Such willful ambiguity. I walk steadily.
The soft retreat of chlorophyll asks useless
questions. The mother tree sleeps
and misses the violet whoop of fall,
the overlapping dive of it all.
By now night has stolen
twilight’s indescribable glow.
Our house has quietly slid
into an atmospheric blur.
There is nothing more to see.
My darling, the violet has disappeared
and I’m not yet home but I can still feel
the brittle slump of frost behind the trees.
©2009, Christine Klocek-Lim
My new chapbook is almost ready! You can order it at Seven Kitchens Press. The wonderful editor of this small press, Ron Mohring, posted a sample poem along with the chapbook announcement: Preteen, 7 a.m. Just scroll down to read it.
This chapbook was written over a few months’ time in 2007, beginning with NaPoWriMo in April of that year. The few that were written earlier were the ones that inspired me to continue with a collection that explored parenthood with its myriad difficulties and joys.
Thanks go to Ron and his assistant Matthew Koppenhaver for all the hard work they put into making this chapbook possible. Thanks also to the wonderful people who provided blurbs for the book: Jim Daniels
and Karen J. Weyant
, both fine writers I greatly admire.
I’m told that Seven Kitchens Press
is working on a new website for this year, and I may have more blurbs about the chapbook that appear there this summer. Stay tuned!
PS: yup, that’s a photo I took of my son holding a red box. The box was a gift from my brother, the notebook a gift from my husband.
Carved by the boys to the music of MJ: “Thriller”