Thursday, August 03, 2006

Poetic States - Montana and Ohio


The Shining Mountains

The explorers entered near the mouth
of the Yellowstone and left east
of Lolo Pass, the Missouri’s length
explored past the convergence to the source.
They returned and left at the same points
on the way to report to Mr Jefferson,
the Marias and Yellowstone surveyed.

They never found the Northwest Passage,
but no one else has either, at least
until the Years of the Earth’s Warming
and the green grass they discovered growing
high as a horse’s mane disappeared
as bison and free men of the plains
did before the Constitution a century old.



The Way to a Poet’s Heart

Ohio will always be special to me.
The only person I ever found who knew
what leather britches are besides my family,
I found in a fake Indian village in Dayton,
trapped on the weekend during a business trip

She sat in a lath and daub house to teach
visitors how to grind corn, make succotash,
what was safe to eat and how to fix it
(which doesn’t include skunk cabbage),
and she knew what leather britches are.

The only person outside of my family
unless you do.

We talked about mountain food,
comfort food,
real food,
and she made Ohio special…


SunWatch, Ohio

Along the Miami, near ancient mounds,
a thatch covered house, no more than a shack –
a place to remember how things were done
when the people roamed the river valley.


Blogger C. E. Chaffin said...

Gary, unlike most commentators on blogs I actually say something not so very nice sometimes. And in your two poems on states I experienced far too much telling and a prosaic rhythm, although the line breaks are acceptable.

I go to other blogs and see people posting new poems each day.

It seems there is restraint anymore. For me it takes a long time for a poem to mature. I rarely if ever post something new. I have to find the poem within the poem first else discard the poet altogether.

Then this is one man's opinion of moonlight that you didn't ask for. At least I wrote you a poem

8:46 PM  
Blogger Gary B said...

I can't disagree, but they are popular maybe something similar to the popularity of America's Top Talent.

Actually, I'm enjoying the exercise and learning a few things about what and how I am writing.

Thanks much for the honesty.



9:15 PM  

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