Near the End….

Red Star - Last oneDo you see me?  Here all by myself

Perhaps it’s not my place to turn such beauty to sorrow

All those around me, someday they will be gone too

With the next breath of winter air…is it my turn?

 

These memories seem so vast for what was so short a time

I can still feel each drop of rain, each summer breeze – the early chill of fall

But more importantly..what is the legacy I leave behind?

Will the way I caught the breeze of life be remembered at all?

 

The acorns from my branch have grown and gone

What were once specs in the sunlight, now have life of their own

Did the shade I provided and drops of morning dew help at all

When that final breeze cuts the limbs around me…will you know then?

 

It happens, expected, but still much too soon

There is a gentle sensation here among all these friends

I can see the sky about me and hear their tender, heart-felt goodbye’s

Rest will come easy now, my time for contribution is at an end

 

A gust carries me one last time…one last adventure

How grateful can I be?  To have seen and done so much

He carries me to a wide open field where I can see forever

As I settle to the earth I am content to have played my part….

Last Standing…….

Last standing 10082014

“What do you mean go in there?”, the stalks were a foot above either of our heads.  It would be impossible. Tim turned quickly and shot me his most intimidating look,  “well, you hit the ball in there so you have to get it”.  This, on fact, was true; however, he got even angrier as I laughed at the  painfully sheepish look he had hoped would motivate-intimidate me.

I stepped back to see if I could even get a glimpse of the other side of the field, we were just too short, it was too far away.  There was something very foreboding about those tall rows of corn stalks to seven-year olds.  From a distance they looked so pretty this time of year, but once you got up close,  they were like a thousand skinny kids just waiting to rip at your skin and clothes.

We stood and stared for a few minutes.  Tim shifted his weight from one foot to another.  The afternoon sunlight was fading quickly and he hadn’t had his chance to bat.  Too bad, I thought to myself as I wondered what mysterious animals, insects and who knows what…waited in there for me.

Tim rocked forward and with a push to the shoulder said “go on…it’s just old dead corn stalks”.  I grimaced…he could have left out the dead part.  “Alright, but if I don’t come out quickly you have to get help”.  We both let out a nervous giggle, I dropped my glove and moved to the front of the stalks.

You always think you know exactly where the balls goes at times like this.  Doesn’t your dad always tell you…”don’t take your eye off of it”.  I thought I sort of knew.  With a sigh and a deep breath I stepped in between the middle rows and tried as hard as I could to focus on just where it had gone.  With every step the afternoon sun seemed to grow a bit more faint.  I could hear the crunch of the dried silk and husks beneath my shoes with every step I took.

How would I ever find it?  There was no signs anywhere.  It could have bounced from stalk to stalk, hit a rock and gone another fifty feet.  I had to find it…we only had one.  I stopped quickly as I heard something off to my right.  Rustling in the corn row, not far from where I stood.  At seven you don’t understand panic, but the knot in my stomach and the lump in my throat were big enough to choke a horse; or so I thought.  I moved closer to the sound.  I turned a corner just as a big grey squirrel lunged from underneath a pile of dried corn cob.  It had been first grade since I’d had “an accident”…that was close.

I thought I had gone further but I could still hear Tim hollering from the end of the row.  I screamed back…”no, the only thing I found was a squirrel…we can eat….but not play”  I chuckled to myself and then my next step threw me onto my back so quickly I felt as though the ground had begun to swallow me up.  The stalks and husks made a soft but scratchy landing pad.  I shook my head for a minute trying to figure out what had happened.  I sat up and looked towards my feet.  There rolling gently to a stop was the ball.  It had found me.  I’d stepped on it and I guess it was showing us its opinion of getting thrown in there.

I stood up, bent over, picked up the ball and brushed the dried silk and dust from it.  Hard to believe that something like a baseball could make you conquer so many fears, in such a short period of time.  I shouted out to Tim…”I’ve got it”, true to form that day and so many years later his response was “it’s about time”.

I walked from the corn rows that day, a little taller, maybe a bit braver, and painfully more aware of the meaning of the phrase “watch your step”.  We would hit the ball around the field for a few more years before we moved on to bigger greener fields, without so many cornstalks.  But we always knew we had learned some important lessons in that field, there among those cornstalks we would play almost until the snow covered the ground and the last ones standing…were us.

There she was…..

SEW One Vibrant One

Like the simple lyric from a thousand songs

we look up and see you standing there

not alone, yet unable to see those around you

just impossible to notice anyone else

Has it been like this forever?  I think not

you wait for that special moment, when it’s all about you

is it really so easy to stand out in a crowd?

Or is it just the work you’ve done that’s paying off now

In this moment of triumph we know…it won’t last

Nature’s menacing cold shoulder will feel harsh and unkind

Before too long you’ll fade into our memory

but for just this one second, there was no one but you

Fall…A time of peace

Fall Peace - Susan Witt Will

These trees and colors all know my name
Too many conversations through time to count
Still they wait here each and every season
Listening quietly for me as the fall breeze blows

Through the winter and spring I miss them
Even as summer wanes they just aren’t ready yet
Then that first crisp morning calls both our names
Is it time now? Not quite; but soon, very soon

A moving rebirth with every next season
Something familiar christens new memories
Whether much to early or right before dusk
This palette of nature sings with such vibrance
It’s impossible to not let your soul hear each note

Then quickly we pass through them time and again
Still sometimes forgetting to say “thank you for that”
But in the moment when they catch us
We take comfort in saying
Winter can come now, we’ve had fall peace at last.

Fall Peace – Susan Witt Will

Ode for Writing to William Blake

Doesn’t it feel like there should be something magical, some universal ripple the first time you read Blake. In retrospect, it’s not very difficult to understand while those of “his day” might not have taken an appreciation to his work.  Let’s face it, if you’ve read it or enjoyed his prints and art…well, you might say he was a little out there.

That’s not to say we should discount his contribution to the period.  It was prophetic and unique, to say the least.  As I work my way through the wonders of history, especially my current fixation with pre-revolutionary war America it’s hard to believe that he wasn’t older.  But he might not have been the kind of poet you’d want around during the renaissance, so perhaps his life period was well designed.

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve rummaged through his works.  As I do that, I may post a note or two on what they mean to me now some 35 years after I was exposed to them for the first time.  It should be interesting and I am curious.