TANKA DIARY: 2009—2014
Old guys with Florida plates,
Bound for New England
Maybe the Adirondacks,
Perhaps the Thousand Islands
Leafless trees against blue sky;
Birds crowd the feeder,
Goldfinches in winter garb,
Muted Eddie Bauer green.
Foggy summer day,
Cannot see the Isles of Shoals.
Walk on gravel beach,
Cairns silhouetted in mist.
I add a rock to the pile.
Stopped at the border,
Into Maine from New Brunswick,
We have been profiled:
Senior citizens suspect,
Contraband prescription drugs.
Sugar maple, oak,
Umber in the gray-white mist:
As though light shown from within:
Quiet New Hampshire morning
THE MORNING OF THE SANDWICH FAIR
It is the morning of the Sandwich Fair.
Summer people come back to New Hampshire in October:
A giddy sense of trespass
Where the tangents of everyday lives touch, briefly.
We are sharers of space, of holy ground,
Eavesdroppers, bound by the accident of juxtaposition,
By random consecutiveness.
At the craft shop mothers with children of different ages
Mill about. The women order wedding presents
With a certain vacant self-absorption.
The children have opted out of the pewtersmith’s tour;
They careen around the shop, handling the merchandise
And each other: home schoolers on an outing, we conclude.
At the restaurant four classmates,
Over fifty but not quite our age,
Critique a class reunion.
They lament poor attendance at the dinner,
The choice of entree, time’s unkindness.
We drive on, regarding each maple, each sumac
As though leaves might not turn again.
At the Sandwich Fair Amanda Glidden awaits the pony pulling,
Her sheep judged runners up to best of show.
“The Morning of the Sandwich Fair” appeared in the 2010 Poets’ Guide to New Hampshire