Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Chasing Sunsets

A dwindling summer lingers on
as zinnias hold out stubbornly.
The buds set on chrysanthemums -
by mid-October they shall bring
us autumn sunbursts. Drink with me
a toast to Browning and to Frost,
and one for dear Ms. Emily,
for summer's green must soon be lost
to ghostly winds and leafy streams
and graves that were not tilled in spring.

Friday, October 2, 2009

A I R <---> M A I L

For my mother (Oct 17,1932 - Feb 28, 2009)

The stamps you left inside your roll-top desk
are lady liberties worth thirty-nine
cents each. And in this chair I'm like a guest
in a closed Bed and Breakfast as I sign
this poem/letter that I'll never send
to you because the place is much too far
where you have flown. I cannot cause the wind
to carry my fond wishes to your star.

We last spoke on a Saturday by phone;
the final time was February-gray.
I told you I would call you back at home
that afternoon. I never got to say
the words I would have said if I had known
how quickly death would swallow flesh and bone.

Anne Bryant-Hamon (c) Oct. 1, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Drift Wood Summer

We're on a sand dune sloping toward the ocean,
our eyes reclining with the setting sun.
Gray silhouettes form shadows from the motion,
of palm trees, though the painting's not yet done.

The artist may yet choose to add some trouble,
a salty water-spray caused by a gale,
or driftwood pieces spread among the rubble,
with sea gulls huddled on a split-wood rail.

Perhaps he'll place a storm cloud in the distance
for contrast, (purple doused with midnight blue).
and make the faces of the couple listless
to hint of sadness that the summer's through.

Regardless of the painting or its weather,
their bare feet trace the drifting sand together.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Flu Away! Fresh Vegetable Juice



It's meatless Monday and I just finished a delicious healthy glass of what I call 'Flu-Away' fresh vegetable juice.
This is truly making a difference in my life. Nothing energizes me quite like fresh vegetable juice with a dash of Celtic Sea Salt.
When I drink this, I imagine sunlight coursing through my veins. The glory that radiates from our faces comes from the sun we drink!
I always start with a base of 4-5 medium tomatoes, then add the freshest ingredients I happen to have on hand, often what has
been picked from our garden that day. And never, never throw away broccoli stems - it's like throwing away gold.
Any combination of veggies will do - just do it! Make sure you have dark greens involved. You need an electric juicer, of course. I use a Juiceman brand.

Today I had freshly juiced:
5 Tomatoes
Large Bunch of Kale
1 Whole Carrot
2 Stalks Celery
1 large Green Pepper
2 Large Broccoli Stems
Fist full of fresh picked Green Beans
1/2 tsp Celtic Sea Salt

***I prefer this drink with one hot banana pepper, which we sometimes have handy in our garden.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

SENSUAL MUSIC



Dedicated to Margaret Menamin who passed away June 3, 2009

Where touch ends, its music plays on
like the light on a surface of water that bends
at first glance - then appears to be gone
where touch ends.

I have friends, though I'm often alone.
They’re like sail boats that sift on a lake of soft winds.
Touch reaches toward words whispered clear to the bone
that my hands may not grasp, though a yearning descends.

And loneliness – sometimes it sends
my needy heart searching for sun
where touch ends.

Anne Bryant-Hamon (Revised Feb – 2010)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

May Morning

Open wide as a market umbrella,
a white crape myrtle shades my front lawn,
newly pebbled with patches of yellow
dots of dandelions. Just after dawn

I awake to the sound of glad singing
breaking forth in a song without words.
There’s no need for a language; the meaning –
resonates from the joy of the birds.

To their open air concert I’m bringing
only bare feet and sleepy, green eyes,
and my coffee, of course, while I’m flinging
on a tee-shirt and blue jeans. I rise

up delighted by Spring-time this morning,
and deft beauty of nature’s adorning.


© '08

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Janet Waking - One of my favorite poems...

I love this poem. And not without a good cause. This morning a situation I was watching made me think of it again. I even considered writing a poem about how part of me would like to interrupt 'Janet's ' crisis, but as Peter learned, that is not the mind of Christ about the matter.

______________________________________________________________
Janet Waking

By John Crowe Ransom

Beautifully Janet slept
Till it was deeply morning. She woke then
And thought about her dainty-feathered hen,
To see how it had kept.

One kiss she gave her mother,
Only a small one gave she to her daddy
Who would have kissed each curl of his shining baby;
No kiss at all for her brother.

“Old Chucky, Old Chucky!” she cried,
Running on little pink feet upon the grass
To Chucky’s house, and listening. But alas,
Her Chucky had died.

It was a transmogrifying bee
Came droning down on Chucky’s old bald head
And sat and put the poison. It scarcely bled,
But how exceedingly

And purply did the knot
Swell with the venom and communicate
Its rigour! Now the poor comb stood up straight
But Chucky did not.

So there was Janet
Kneeling on the wet grass, crying her brown hen
(Translated far beyond the daughters of men)
To rise and walk upon it.

And weeping fast as she had breath
Janet implored us, “Wake her from her sleep!”
And would not be instructed in how deep
Was the forgetful kingdom of death.

_____________________________________________

“Janet Waking” is a metaphor for her initiation into knowledge of grief, loss, and the irreversibility of death. After a pleasant sleep, nothing seems amiss in Janet's world, but her true awakening begins when she decides to see how Chucky (a “dainty-feathered hen”) has “kept” (a colloquial expression referring to its well-being). As she pauses to give each parent a dutiful morning kiss, it is obvious that she usually gets her way. Next Janet runs “across the world upon the grass” to Chucky's house. In running from her home (where she is in control) to Chucky's house, she figuratively runs “across the world” because her world is about to be completely changed, as she moves from innocence to knowledge. (The speaker may also be punning with the Southern colloquialism of ’run across’ meaning ’inadvertently discover.’)

Janet discovers that “alas” Chucky has died. “Alas” both suggests the depth of her shock and loss and, by its very extravagance, creates a mock serious tone that undercuts and balances her grief. Chucky has died from a bee sting on its bald head. The “venom” (a term usually associated with evil) has caused a large purple knot on Chucky's head and rigor throughout the hen's body. The speaker observes that now Chucky's “poor comb” stands straight but Chucky does not. This flippant understatement seems intended to distance the speaker from Janet's emotions and remind the reader that a pet hen's death may not be taken very seriously by adults.

This initiation poem, which begins with literal sleep, ends with death (a sleep from which Chucky cannot be awakened). Janet attempts to “wake” Chucky, but the hen is “translated” beyond the reach of earthly power. Weeping so hard that her sobs seem inseparable from her breathing, Janet then turns to the adults, begging them to intervene. When they try to explain the concept of death, Janet simply rejects this idea that she is not ready to comprehend.
Bibliography

Brooks, Cleanth. “John Crowe Ransom: As I Remember Him.” American Scholar 58, no. 2 (Spring, 1989): 211-233.

Cowan, Louise. The Fugitive Group: A Literary History. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1959.

Howard, Maureen. “There Are Many Wonderful Owls in Gambier.” Yale Review 77 (Summer, 1988): 521-527.

Malvasi, Mark G. The Unregenerate South: The Agrarian Thought of John Crowe Ransom, Allen Tate, and Donald Davidson. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1997.

Modern American Poetry Web site. “John Crowe Ransom.” http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/poets/m_r/ransom/life.htm.

Quinlan, Kieran. John Crowe Ransom's Secular Faith. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1989.

Rubin, Louis D., Jr. “The Wary Fugitive: John Crowe Ransom.” Sewanee Review 82 (1974): 583-618.

Young, Thomas Daniel. Gentleman in a Dustcoat: A Biography of John Crowe Ransom. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1976.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Passover - Easter Greetings




I figure I probably should post something at least once a month, otherwise, why keep a blog? The photo is a reminder that we are both alike and different than each other, but we all need love and friends. I have a few good friends. That is enough.
I have not been writing much poetry since late December when I was kicked off Eratosphere. And that's not a bad thing, actually. I'm paying more attention to 'real' people and other 'real-life' things and doing more in my house and garden. I did read CE Chaffin's poetry collection of poems "Unexpected Light', which I recommend as a good collection of free verse poems. I'd started reading it at the end of February and had planned to finish it then. But mom died on the 28th and that, along with some of my own physical ailments seems to have swallowed up the entire month of March. I am feeling a lot better than I did in February. The darkness appears to be deepening if one measures it by looking at the news; there has been an increase in violence and mass killings which is surely connected to the economic downturn. I do my best not to be troubled by the tossing sea. My biggest threat from my perspective is to be done in by a broken heart from being witness to such mass suffering and confusion. But it is not in my control, so I wait for God to bring everything to the light in due time. I wait. I wait for the Lord of all the earth, the God who gave me a spirit, a soul and a body. He will be faithful to all his Creation.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

- COLORING BOOK -

The March issue of POETRY lies open on my desk
As I wait for Mr. Durden’s
2nd period Pre-Calculus Algebra students
Who will rush through the door when the bell rings.

I flip randomly through the pages
Knowing full well I’ll have to read
A pile of debris passed off as poetry
Before I find (with just a little bit of luck)
A couple of gifts tucked between the covers,
Perhaps satisfying enough to prevent
The recently pondered cancellation of my subscription.

I twirl my freshly dyed brown curls
With the fingers of my right hand
As I hold the edge of a page with my left thumb.
A thought comes to me upon reading a poem called
“Landscape With Horse Named Popcorn” :

"I could have saved myself the trouble
Of applying hair color last week,
Could have just pulled all my gray hairs out today
One by one as I turn these pages."

Instead, I take out red and blue dry-erase markers
And scrupulously scribble colorful comments
In the margins of this literary rag.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

in Remembrance of my Mother

John 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.




Margaret Elaine Bryant - b. Oct. 17, 1932 - Passed - Feb. 28, 2009
May she rest in peace from all the troubles and pain in this world.
I don't have a poem. But more tears than I expected.


- with love from your 4th/last child - Edith/Anne Bryant-Hamon

______________________________________

From March 4, 2009 Atlanta Journal Obituaries:

Margaret Bryant

Family-Placed Death Notice

BRYANT, Margaret Elaine Bryant passed away on February 28, 2009. She was 76. Mrs. Bryant was proceeded in death by her husband William R. Bryant. She is survived by her sons Donald S. Bryant, David R. Bryant and daughters Susan Bragg and Anne Hamon and a host of grandchildren and great grandchildren. Her Funeral will be held at 12:00 Noon Wed. March 4, 2009 at The Church of God of the Union Assembly 3105 Bankhead Highway Litha Springs, GA 30122. Pastor Jack Giles officiating. Graveside services are private family only. Family request no flowers.

_____________________________0-0__________________________________
HERE ARE A FEW THINGS I FOUND IN ONE OF MOTHER'S SCRAPBOOKS
THAT SHE'D SAVED....STUFF SHE'D CUT OUT TO READ OVER AGAIN - THE OPENING COMMENTS IN ITALICS ARE MINE....

I was thinking about death and the purpose of death. One thought always leads me to another. I was thinking about certain sins that we find disgusting whether in ourselves or others, behaviors and weaknesses in humanity that we would not want to have to dwell with forever. Death is necessary to "drown" those things - to extinguish them - to release us from the bondage of sin's grasp. Sin can only reign in the mortal realm. Sin has an appointment with death - thank God!

My mother left behind several journals with things she clipped out and prayers she wrote to our Heavenly Father. Mother loved God. Mother was a loving person. But mother, like everyone I know still battled with sin. In that regard, she was no different than any other person. Mother and I did not see eye to eye on everything spiritual. In fact, it was difficult for us to communicate about the things of God and about the scriptures because she was set in her ways of thinking from the church she was raised in. But she knew what I believed about Christ saving ALL of mankind. And she didn't argue with me, nor did I argue with her. I found so many lovely things she'd saved in one of her scrapbooks. Since I think it will bless those who read them I will post some of them here and perhaps add more to this thread as time allows.


A NAME, A NAME, A NAME

I know a soul that is steeped in sin
That no man's art can cure;
But I know a name, a name, a name
that can make that soul all pure.

I know a life that is lost to God,
bound down by things on earth;
But I know a name, a name, a name,
that can bring that soul a new birth.

I know of lands that are sunk in shame,
of hearts that faint and tire;
But I know a name, a name, a name,
That will set those lands on fire.

- Author Unknown -

___________________________________

THE QUIET HEART - Precious in His Sight

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints. - PSALM 116:15

Can this be death -
to be released from fear and sorrow,
from sickness, weariness, and pain?
To be removed from sin's enslavement,
From Satan's influence and domain?

Can this be death -
to be presented in His presence,
the One who loves me evermore?
To be accepted in the fullness
Of Christ whom I adore?

Can this be death -
to know complete fulfillment
as I look upon his face?
To feast upon the glories
and the riches of his grace?

No, this is life-
with all that it can offer,
It is joy that overflows!
It is peace that knows no measure,
It is victory o'ver my foes! - MARTIN WEDGE

_________________________________________________

--- The greatest event which can take place in the life of a believer occurs when God delivers us
from the bondage of our bodies and our spirits go to be with him in heaven. What a glorious thought
that is! There is nothing to dread, for it is good to be with the Lord. Death is forever swallowed up
in victory. - HAROLD LINDSELL

_________________________________________________

I do not want to go too soon,
before that final grain of sand,
but neither do I want to be
held back by some unwilling hand
that does not understand God's way
of changing these old clothes I wear,
from frazzled threads of faded flesh,
to robes of grace as light as air.

I want to go out unrestrained,
when he who gave life sets it free,
and pass through with that final grain
of sand in joy and victory. - HELENE STALLCUP, Conway, Arkansas

_________________________________________


Precious, oh how precious is that blessed sheep,
Folded in his bosom, wrapped in slumber deep;
None but Jesus giveth rest so true and sweet
For the weary body and the wayworn feet.

Precious, oh how precious, he alone can know
What a blessed respite after human woe;
Only he can measure their eternal gain,
When they leave forever earthly care and pain.

Precious, oh how precious, to behold his face,
Ever to be with him and to praise his grace
Ah, when Jesus giveth his beloved sleep,
'Tis the tenderest token of his love so deep. - AUTHOR UNKNOWN

_____________________________________________


By day and by night, in life and in death, may I ever be true to Thee, O Lover of my soul,
my ceaseless Friend, my unchangeable Savior. Into Thy hands I commit my spirit. - F.B. Meyer

Friday, February 27, 2009

For a Flighty Wind Bag

- flimsy fLight verse -

To a Janus-face from the land down under
full of too much wind and waves and thunder:
When you cut my nose off to kite your face
you perceived as ignorance my worn out grace.
To a world class queen who knows it all,
may your heel snap off in an Opera Hall!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

February Blues

Shall I inscribe my eulogy to joy
on this, a lonesome, February day
over a man I'd thought of as a boy
until he sealed my lips. I held no sway,
no current strong enough to draw him out.
My language blurred the lines, then ran astray
into a grayish space that conjures doubt.
My tender words were meant to chase away
the heaviness that lay upon my shoulder.
I poured three cups of flirting with a smile.
And not expecting it – he grew much colder
as if he’d seen some ghost or phantom guile.
Perhaps the coming spring may turn around
that repertoire of joy I thought we’d found.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

You Say My Name

You say my name yet I don't know from where
you learned to curl the vowels like whispered twine
on silken breath of gossamer. With care
you say my name.

You speak and all your words become like wine
and California poppies, grapes and air
as thin as in some northern mountain clime.

Your voice of elegance makes my name rare
and takes me to a place outside of time
where I forget my sorrows. Like a prayer
you say my name.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

AfterImage

I see your face and hands
through a dim-lit, panoramic view.
My memories of you are like milky glass
wrapped around far-off days,
metaphysical lines funneling through my dreams
tempting me to reach beyond that which I can grasp,
into vagrant fields where children used to play.

In my eyes, you were high upon a ledge
and I, the trailing ivy on your wall,
my curvy tendrils seeking a firm attachment,
my leaves growing outward toward the light.

I recall you seemingly obscured,
packing suitcases,
often traveling – a distant notion.
Yet I can still recall the love from your eyes,
their lovely hue, like the heaven-blue of morning glories.

I heard about you through stories
from lips that fed me ‘who you were’ –
words from mother’s sacred urn of reminiscence
mixed with ashes of her ire
and fragments of your Colorado haze.

I cannot capture the hereafter,
nor touch you as I once could.
Yet sometimes in reverie,
I envision you:
skipping rocks across a river,
sailing a boat across a lake,
laughing heartily for the joy of life,
an ordinary boy who once was
my father's mother's son.

__________________________________________________________

“Remembering my earthly father”
William R. Bryant - (Born - March 26,1932 - Denver Colorado
– Died September 10,1969 - Birmingham, Alabama)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Lonely Girl's Lament

for the innocent children of Gaza and the war-torn world

May I sit in your sandbox?
I'll be very quiet.
I'll bring my own shovel
and leave all the contents.
I'll sweep off the grains -
you may keep all the sand.

I'll stay in a corner;
and you can pretend
you don't know me from Adam
when your friends come around.

Perhaps you'll impress them
with an appearance of charity
along with your rare way
of managing knowledge.

And there's self-satisfaction
in your blithe condescension
as you bend toward a gentile
(read: less than a dog).

I would not have come here
of my own volition;
I was sent by some other,
His reasons unknown.

There's only one Sun
for us here in this garden
to light every playground -
One God for One Earth.
______________________________

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Love on the Tip of My Tongue

The words in my mouth have become
Stuck, stuck on - the tip of my tongue.

Where lofty thoughts would skate
They soon encounter hate, hate, hate.

Such violence seems to me pathetic.
The world lies aposiopetic.