A guest in lavender

Someone has arrived with spring,
A gangly girl cast in a lavender hue,
She sojourns at the garden gate,
Positioning her whimsy there,
Her want to protect the portal,
My wife has unfounded jealousy,
She says this spindly guest mocks,
Though she has not spoken, she clings,
Rearranging the wooden fence tactfully,
I find her a rather refreshing temptress,
Sliding beneath the crocus and rose,
Her gown of green lifted, baring,
Leggy female of Mother Earth,
You have interrupted my plans,
How can I but love you, my sweet,
Unwelcome beauty, euphonious Wisteria.

 ©2015, Donald Harbour

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The wheel of the year

There is sleep in the air,
rustling leaves begin to fall,
the sagging eyelids of the season.
Each day a crispness awakens,
it heralds other subtle changes,
rest for the land, flowers, lakes.
The cleansing purgatory of snow
gathers its chemistry in the north.
The gentle breeze whispers: “Quiet now,”
the hush is Mother Nature’s cool touch
upon the frantic fevered cheek of summer.
Human hearts yearn for this time,
they cling to past ancient old ways,
a quickening yearning for the hearth,
harvested fields, ducks on the fly.
Goddesses lurk in the shadows,
Modron and Olwen lean into their work,
shouldering, turning the wheel of the year.
Sages know only spring and autumn hold love,
the dawn and twilight of seasons,
the spiritual recharging of all life.
Smoke rises from a distant chimney,
it has comfort in its languid message,
a temple incense carrying prayers.
In the living is the solitary knowledge
that with the ending of the year awaits
creation’s glorious beginnings,
the only promise winter gives up.

©2015, Donald Harbour

Morning in the South

I arose this morning –
the dawn silently tip toeing,
across the sleeping dark horizon.

Bare stark branches of trees,
gatekeepers of the coming day,
beseech the horns of Luna to stay.

Night has left behind diamonds
glittering, strung across the ground,
a gift for the coming spring.

Tendrils of fireplace smoke waft
with the musky clear, crisp air,
a ritual offering to the hearth.

Fluffy feathered birds chirp awake,
shaking the cold from drowsy beaks,
tenors tuning up for their work.

A distant hound speaks its mind,
announcing another glorious
morning in the American South.

This magical moment of wakening,
carries the heritage of time,
of past and present, of tomorrows.

It touches the soul, the heart,
with things that are gentle reminders
of what it means to be a Southerner.

 ©2015, Donald Harbour

Winter long flying bird

The hawk of winter is sinking
its talons into the soul of earth,
bitter grievous dark beacon of
the long sleep, long flying bird
that beckons the forgiveness of spring,
it cannot wait its task for it blankets
this night with the howl of its song
and the moulting of its cold cold feathers,
perched upon the dead and fallow ground
there is hope in the birth it nurtures,
a blessing in the sacrifice to destiny,
it will not nest forever but for the morrow,
cast back to its northern clime
duty bound to leave us when the sun
awakens from its southern sojourn
with a heated nod shooing that pesky bird.

©2014, Donald Harbour

One night

One night in the late moody spring,
when the humid air lay as a shadow,
a cosmetic darkness lit only by fireflies,
through a garden window lattice, I saw you.
With smoky eyes a solitary, sultry woman,
cradled by I know not what, though
I felt that deep beneath your breasts
an Andalusian Palos held your beating heart,
its rhythm a sensuous dance of Gitanos.
There seemed to be a sigh upon your lips,
Perhaps a whisper, or an invitation,
An intent that you were want to speak.
Did a past of secrets bind your tongue,
Guiltless life lived without love,
A treasure of a soul’s stored jewels,
Unspent, saved for life’s one truth.
There was nothing that could be said,
Not enough words to express you,
The old masters painted women in your image,
Capturing the essence for all to behold.
And then, you were gone, leaving a void,
Now every night I come here again, and again,
Waiting in the shadows in the garden,
The fireflies have gone to bed, but
there is memory and the latticed window,
and mind cast upon the glass,your vision
One night in the late moody spring.

©2014, Donald Harbour

A Greek tragedy

The honey red heifer is birthing,
a difficult calving under monstrous
roiling dark bellied storm clouds,

She has chosen to offer up her gift,
under a twisted, gnarled, ancient tree ,
the only old guardian of the pastures.

She bellows not understanding it is necessary.
In the midst of her agony the Hyades
conspire to muffle her wild-eyed complaints.

The bowels of the fields are bulging,
constipated with swollen verdant seeds,
anticipating an elixir from above.

These grassy tarns of seasonal
vivacity will explode, grasping
the pastures fertile beckoning thighs,

a rapturous rupture of the soil, an
orgasm of awakening to satisfy
the heavenly rain spiked thrusts.

In the midst of April’s tribulation
a nocturnal nuisance has arrived,
raucous, unyielding in its annoyance.

Somewhere in the fence hedge, above
natures pious conversation, piercing
the vernal bacchanal of the night,

a feathered creature speaks in
full tenor timbre, Pavarotti incarnate,
it choruses the drama of this Greek

tragedy, played out in the amphitheater
of creation. Will there be life, or, the
tearful damning gloom of death.

Thor’s mighty hammer dispels
the Stygian darkness with crackling
light, a proctor quieting the class.

With a pause, sweet as the kiss of dew,
there is a gasp of all the calamity.
Mother Nature gathers her children, watching.

Life has arrived in a wet gelatinous
blanket, loved with soft brown eyes
and a lick for the first calf of spring.

©2014, Donald Harbour

The bite of winter

The season’s dog has clamped its jaws,
biting deep into my warm, moist flesh.
It’s bark turning the sky dispiriting grey
as a canopy of death, an ash urn turned
upside down clutching at the life below
with corpse cold fingers. The birds
refuse to fly, those that do soon drop
from heaven, feathered chunks of ice.
To breathe is to inhale shards of glass,
each breath a searing arctic surgery.
The air is still, cloying, a suffocating chill.
Frigidness permeates every pore in the body
making hands useless, hammer struck fingers
ache dangling off reddened fleshy paws.
The end of the year brings the burden
of survival to all creatures; except
those frozen in stillness, burrowed deep in
the earth never knowing the suffering above,
sleeping to awaken when spring triumphs,
banishing old man Winter to his northern realm.

©2013, Donald Harbour