Night Chores

She hears the creek,
It’s voice burbling
In the darkness
Just as it does this time
Every year,
The heavy snows
To run down the mountain sides
Promise flowing,
Within cold water,

And she wonders
If it will wash away
The bleakness
That has been the winter too
Or if that will persist
Even through the sprouting
Of green grasses,
The blooming of jonquils
Of tulips.

And she cradles the cold pans,
Metal clanking on metal
As her head lamp casts
Its beam
Back and forth,
Back and forth,
While she calls,
She calls,
She calls…

And she waits,
The stars not shining,
Through heavy clouds
That she knows
No longer hold white flakes.
From the smell on the air
She can tell they hold nothing at all,
Not for her,
Not on this night,
Their purpose only
To block the celestial light
To emphasize the suspense,
To keep her guessing,

And then there’s the rumbling whicker,
The two pairs of glowing lights
That reflect her searching beam,
Pinpricks of life from out of shadows,
Jewels in velvet,

And, with the soft thudding
Of enormous feet
Dark shapes
Hulk out of the gloom,

And she touches each one
As they nose into the pans,
Their shaggy coats coming away
By the handsful,
Covering her fingers with hair
That is no longer needed
In this warming season.

And she pats,
Though she really shouldn’t,
Giving them her best whicker back,

And the creaking of the gate latch
Says to her once again
That they are well,
They are safe,

And running water
In the background of night
Declares the spring.

©2019 Annette Meserve

Brick and Mortar

Life at the Far End is now available on real, actual, physical book shelves!

Say what you will about the convenience of internet ordering, there’s nothing quite like wandering around in a book store, the creak of the boards under foot, or maybe the spring of the carpet as you move slowly along, head cocked at an angle, reading the spines sideways.  Your finger traces the titles that suggest and entreat, inviting you take a gentle walk with old friends or offering a plunge into worlds you haven’t before considered.

Until one strip of color, brighter than the rest, catches your attention.  The title is intriguing, the cover beautiful, and you turn it over to the back blurb for your first glimpse, for the quick flyby of what’s inside.
“…started as a gift…”  it says,
“…spontaneous poem…” it says,
“…a life lived on the fringes…” it says.

Other people move around you and, in the background, you hear their murmurs to one another as they stand together, comparing their own treasured finds.

But, with the opening of the front fly, with the turning of the pages, you stand no longer wholly in this book filled room.  With your one foot still anchored on the store’s wooden floor, you’ve stepped the other through the window of the author’s words.  Reading a phrase here, a passage there, a stanza, a line, you peer into experiences not your own, but made yours through the sharing.

With a decisive sigh, you close the book and rummage in your bag for the dollars needed.  With the jingle of the shop bell, you step out onto pavement, sunshine bright in your eyes, a new-found friend tucked under your arm.

Just this week, Life at the Far End was added to the display shelves of Poor Richard’s Book Store in Colorado Springs (320-324 1/2 Tejon) CO and Barbed Wire Books in Longmont (504 Main St.) CO.  So now you can come in person and get your own copy of poetry inspired by the cracks of the sidewalks where the dandelions grow, by the smiles of strangers, and by the birds chirping in the branches above our heads.

Don’t live anywhere near Colorado Springs or Boulder County?  No worries, I’m adding new bookstores all the time.  Be sure to check back here for a listing of bookstores in your area and if you’ve got a favorite store, let me know, I’ll check them out.
©2016 Annette Meserve

For Sea

Speak with me dear sister
for, just as the GreenMan speaks life into being, we can bring forth the verdant leaves of our future.

Sing with me lost sister
for, as our voices echo off the walls of dark caverns, we will follow them and find our way.

Cry with me sad sister
for the thunderstorms of our tears will rattle our window panes and rumble our walls.

Laugh with me silly sister
for the peals of our laughter will stave off our serious demons and even make them smile.

Work with me strong sister
for with our efforts combined we will pull each other out of the swamp and bring our effectiveness to bear on our world.

Paint with me beautiful sister
for, just as midwives usher life into the world, so we will birth the magic through our fingertips.

Dance with me graceful sister with steps lively and fast, sensual and slow, boorish and ugly, pleasing and fun,
for in our movements we will join with the energy of all beings past, present, future.

Love with me sweet sister
for with the compassion of our mother-hearts we can embrace the puzzles of our lives and of the world.

Live with me sacred sister
for if my experiences are spiced with your essence they will be treasured years well spent.

©2010 Annette Meserve

Guests in the Orchard

I sit at my computer, toiling with my story, absorbed in the concerns of my characters.

But my concentration is broken by the black nose that appears at the edge of my window frame.  Large, alert oval ears twist every direction while thin, muscular legs step cautiously.  One nose, then another and another until there are nine of the miraculous animals carefully moving around my orchard.

They all stop at once, frozen and listening.  Are the dogs on the deck?  No, they are asleep on the bed beside me, oblivious to the trespassers.

Movement begins again as the apparitions relax, relax as much as deer ever do, and they bend their graceful necks to their task.  With the infallible senses of wild creatures, they seek out fallen apples and pears, delicately chewing, storing the last of fall’s sweetness before winter comes.

I try not to move, not to spook them and they are unaware that I sit, feet from them behind glass.  They are unknowing of the gift they have given me and I smile as I turn back to the desert of Utah and the plight of the Princess.

©2013 Annette Meserve

Living on the Frontier

Cautiously, I prepare to go into uncharted territory,
to a place firmly outside of previous experience.
With no, more suitable, person to hand,
It must be done.
It falls to me.
He is apprehensively willing and patiently encouraging.
Take a deep breath,
and a shot of whiskey.
Here we go.

©2013 Annette Meserve