She stood alone among the trees
a woman formed ripe with life,
a perfect beautiful figure
alone and naked in the light.
With confused mind I watched her
while peering through the leaves,
blushing at the vernal scene,
her auburn hair dancing in the breeze.
I could not find air to breath,
my lungs suffocated with my guilt,
yet hidden I viewed her mesmerized,
shuddering with the disgrace I felt.
She stepped into a placid stream,
a bare ripple on the watery plane,
slowly swimming from my sight,
disappearing among river cane.
As if the moment was yesterday
I still smell wild flower’s bloom,
I hear the tinkling water flow,
and the call of a lonely loon.
Fifty-six years have passed me by,
the spot grown over where I stood,
yet an adolescent emotion haunts me,
shamed by a vigil in the silent wood.
©2011, Donald Harbour
Donald, you and I have tread similar territory, the shame that a child feels – but you have taken it into an adult life and reflected on it – very much in the spirit of Neil’s prompt. Nicely done. I loved “shuddering” coming right after “mesmerized” – you captured that moment well.
Donald, I don’t know why I don’t come here more often. Reminded by the Poet of the Week piece at Poets United, I popped in to read this. I’m so glad I did, it is a gorgeous poem.