Early Summer Morning Mile

a poem by Pat Kelbaugh, USA

World and national events darkening my mood.
Never-ending obligations deadening my spirit.
I need to get away, if only out the door for a walk.
Which I haven’t done in too long.
Hat blowing off my head.
I smile.

Dishes in the sink; chores,
yet undone, whining, petulant.
Lawn, too long.
My mile
of egrets flying, sun still low in the east.
Shadows of newly-leafed-out trees,
Harsh, made softer, in early seabreeze.

Last year’s blonde beach grass,
Elbowed aside by this year’s green.
Quick! Call an artist
to oilpaint one more saltmarsh scene.
The little brook, no longer frozen, bubbles
with last week’s rain, over rocks, shady little brook.
Newly emergent ferns.
I throw in a pebble,
and make a wish,
and say a prayer.

And sigh.

I turn around to go back, cross the street, and see
skunk cabbage and poison ivy, spreading their leaves
to try to cover
bottles and trash launched from cars
by passing drunks
at night.


My refuge, still. My escape,
until I can know for sure,
at last,
whether Dreamtime is real.

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