Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Gratitude

Gratitude by Barbara Crooker

This week, the news of the world is bleak, another war

grinding on, and all these friends down with cancer,

or worse, a little something long term that they won’t die of

for twenty or thirty miserable years—

And here I live in a house of weathered brick, where a man

with silver hair still thinks I’m beautiful. How many times

have I forgotten to give thanks? The late day sun shines

through the pink wisteria with its green and white leaves

as if it were stained glass, there’s an old cherry tree

that one lucky Sunday bloomed with a rainbow:

cardinals, orioles, goldfinches, blue jays, indigo buntings,

and my garden has tiny lettuces just coming up,

so perfect they could make you cry: Green Towers,

Red Sails, Oak Leaf. For this is May, and the whole world

sings, gleams, as if it were basted in butter, and the air’s

sweet enough to send a diabetic into shock—

And at least today, all the parts of my body are working,

the sky’s clear as a china bowl, leaves murmur their leafy chatter,

finches percolate along. I’m doodling around this page,

know sorrow’s somewhere beyond the horizon, but still, I’m riffing

on the warm air, the wingbeats of my lungs that can take this all in,

flush the heart’s red peony, then send it back without effort or thought.

And the trees breathe in what we exhale, clap their green hands

in gratitude, bend to the sky.

From Line Dance (Word Press, 2008).

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