When he was a little boy … Elliott’s 15th-birthday poem

When he was a little boy
he’d whisper
in his mother’s ear

(Do you remember?)

Standing close, beside her chair,
softly,
so no one could hear.

“Tell them yourself!”
his mom would urge,
when he’d whisper
in her ear.

But he’d just shake
his auburn curls,
softly,
so no one could hear.

Now he is a grown up boy,
standing tall and speaking loud.

He does interesting things
that get him noticed in a crowd!

Teaching tiny kids to ski,
sometimes he has to speak up loud.

And it’s not just anybody
who can play keyboard
for a Blues Fest crowd!

He’s a nice lad to be around,
standing tall and speaking loud.

And when his parents look at him
you can tell
they are so proud.

But

we do miss that little boy,
speaking so no one can hear.

We like to think
he’s in there still,
whispering
in his big boy’s ear.

~~~

To hear this poem read aloud, play the Evernote audio file

August Rain

The year has turned
to the round month,
the orange one,

month of steam and droning bees,
time when we first remember
the end is tumbling near.

Green and yellow hang in the air
and we bask in the sun’s fullness
like sweet, plump raisins

curving toward a scarcer heat,
the crust of summer
sun-buttered and baked to a crisp sheen.

Some mornings, mist hangs so heavy
a solitary heron blends with the water’s edge,
grey

into grey.
This afternoon, thunder strikes a pose,
proves itself rain’s herald

and swallows the sun. Rain pours heavy
along the river. Later, in the opening air,
thick with humidity and a soft

elegance,
leaves drip with relief and a deeper green
moves from the centre of things

to hover at the edge
of the trees’ dark spaces. Silence
moves aside for the first bird.

 

“August Rain” first published in Economies of Gratitude by Ellen Symons. Penumbra Press 2007

~~~