Retro Poetry

While I have not been as diligent in posting daily as I have in other years, I do like to go out with a big finish.

We have company from Newfoundland on the way, Mike’s sister and her husband. I am very lucky to have the assorted in-laws that I do, and can’t wait to see them. My idolized my sister-in-law within a very short time after meeting her, she’s a visionary in education, a true pioneer and, well, kind of an outlaw to the antiquated and staid school board. She is the big sister that I never had. Oh, hang on a second…

…sorry, that was my late mother-in-law to remind me of one of her favourite sayings “Fair is fair”! Now Elizabeth, you can’t go on about Denise without talking about Linda! I can hear her say. Linda is my other sister-in-law, married to Mike’s older brother, and OF COURSE I love them equally, and Linda will get her praises sang when she gets out to visit!

Where was I? Oh, yes, Denise and her husband. When I first met him, he thought I was quite young and I thought he was very old, and he was quiet, as was I, so generally he frightened me a little.
Turns out he’s not scary at all (nor old) except he’s prone to asking a bazillion questions and is not satisfied with simple answers, and has caused me to scratch my head searching for answers from time to time. But he’s also an engineer, and very handy, and very many projects were finished in our old house with his guidance.

And because I’ve been thinking about their visit, and the promised good times, I think of past visits of theirs, and all the tastes of home they would bring. And so I present a collection of poetry from years gone by that celebrate just that, the taste of home.

MOOSE, MEET

Autumn morning, rising sun
burnishing barrens gold
Father and son wait patiently
For glimpse of brown through brush
Moose steps into field of sight
Son shoulders .308 with steady aim
He finds his mark

Bull turns its massive antlered head
With regal grace and pride of place
And for a moment gazes lock
Soft brown eyes look into blue
Fingers tremble slightly
On trigger, squeezing tightly

Father exhales softly “now, son”
The shot is clean, right through the brain
Majestic animal collapses, down
On legs surprisingly spindly
Dead before it hits the ground

The meat is quartered, packed and hauled
Nothing left but blood stained leaves
This animal did not die in vain
No wastage here, no trophy kill

And though he loves his mother’s stew
The moose meat braised to tender turn
The boy, he will not hunt again

Berry Picking

fingers stained with purplish blush
reaping harvest from the brush
thus begins the picking season

no paid pickers on these hills
and barrens bare of rakes and frills
the buckets are the only tools

and once they’re filled with berry treasure
overflowing a goodly measure
at dusk the bounty is duly home

then the humble berry shines
in cakes and pies and homemade wines
more than a few eaten out-of-hand

recipe names are quick to list
grunt and cobbler, fool and crisp
too many to do justice here

late summer turns to early fall
the bushes have been stripped bare, all
and thus we end the picking season

Trout fishing

Chorus of peepers orchestrates dusk
Raccoon waddles to water’s edge
Mournful loons call over pond
Sun casts red-orange glow
Fireflies light path
Fishing creel full
Pan sizzles
Frying
Trout

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