07 June 2010

there is an urge

Do you ever stare
at a sight
so beautiful, so full,
that you get that urge
to write something
so beautiful
so full?

There is an urge to use thou and thee
and orb, e’er and an a-b-b-a rhyme
All that pretty lacework of poetry to decorate your thoughts and
maybe then they’ll look as fancy
but cleanly perfect
as that beautiful sight.

I saw an old barn the other day on my drive to Iowa.

There was an urge to describe
its every weathered board
what’s left of the roof
how it leans to the right.

The field behind it stretched with knee-high corn.
The sun made the stalks look bolder and richer.
A rutted dirt road pointed straight to the barn door.

There was an urge:
to say, in words so fancy
but cleanly perfect—
Something Deep
about the transient side of life.
All described in that old barn that was,
at one time,
where a farmer came every morning
to milk the cows
and to feed the horses
and to begin his day.

The words didn’t come with thous and thees
and you should never force an e’er and orb
when all you really want to say is:
I like the look of that barn,
but I get a pluck of sadness when I look at it.


  1. I often look at deserted buildings, older buildings, and roads and create stories in my head of what they have to tell.

    This reminds me of that story-making that I do; of imagining a history from nails and wood, dust and peeling paint.

  2. This definitely needs an "OMG" and a shove in person when we are on a walk. This is shaping up to be one of my favorites, Kami, and I have only read it once-- and not with pen in hand! I love it.

  3. Thou write lovely things. I like it.



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