The Reluctant Cook

Burnt ToastThe Reluctant Cook

She cooks everything on high
no patience for process –
warming, browning, crisping.
must all happen at once
else time’s a-wastin’.

Toast cooked as intensely
as an egg is fried,
unfortunate vegetables whacked into bits
drowned in boiling olive oil.
She doesn’t  mind the charred toast
soggy veggies or burnt garlic.

She just goes for it
and cooks everything on high
all the while savoring
the scent of a percolating poem
and moments sewn into life
by unexpected muses.

© photo and poem by carole fults

Comes The Night

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Darkness, you bring  rich deepness
tantalizing mystery
blessing and fear
stealing blankets of warmth
from our comfortable resting place.
You show us stars, planets and galaxies not visible
when you withdraw.

You clothe our world in a blanket of cold,
a womb sheltering  seeds of dramatic sunrise.
You are our Mother as much as Earth.

When light appears over the curvature
bathing our faces with tender regard
you take only partial leave,
lingering in shadows and making a home
under our own hats,
hiding in our marrow
a kernel of corn in a field
awaiting the sun
to stir its birth.

You bring us dreams –
relief from ordinary life,
an existence outside of sometimes banal days.

I would not give you up
nor ask you to stop returning,
for you help me see the substance
gleaming daylight often hides
behind her skirts.
Truth hidden by the bright light of the sun.

©Photo and poem by caf

Crossing the Street

 shoes

 At 89 she still wears high heels
with skinny straps and rhinestones,
she clicks right along in them
while holding onto my arm for balance.

I’m gonna wear high heels and big earrings
until I die, she declares.

Noticing the oncoming traffic she asks
if I’ll help her write her obituary.
I know she sees her future and it hurts me,
but I agree, knowing that even when
the final road is crossed
things will not be finished between us,
for love doesn’t understand
red lights, stop signs, or death.

©photo and poem by carole fults

Sign of Hope

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The Sign

a star appeared.
glowing evidence of love
brilliant radiance
from eons ago,
though nothing indicated
I was worthy.

a hope appeared.
dazzlement of mercy
gleaming possibility
dispelling the dark night sky
though nothing indicated
I deserved such generosity.

I spoke my dreams
hoping you would hear
and when you did
my hope became faith

©poem and photo by carole fults

Honeysuckle in the Evening

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Honeysuckle in the Evening

The sweet scent of
wild honeysuckle
and a gaggle of newborn geese
plodding back to their home in the pond.

Deep throated croaks.
My relations,
some flying,
others singing in my ears,
some blessing my nose
with sweet smells,
or tormenting my skin,
a dense thicket of mosquitoes.

A barking goose,
a carpet of red pine needles.
Forget me nots
not seen,
still there,
things pulled too soon
or not soon enough.
I ask what makes the oak leaves red in the fall?

I see you standing on a hill
waving, smiling,
I call to you, “Put out the lights so I can see the stars”.

The sun out shown a little star until the clouds
eclipsed the sun,
and when the earth eclipsed the moon, the sun again
ascended until new moon darkness
when the little star again shown brightly.

I felt the sun stroking the earth
as he set behind the mountains
and the moon rose over the trees,
her touch the cooler and softer.

lover of day (sun)
mistress of night (moon)
exploring (finding) you on the hill.

© Poem and photo by caf

The Pumpkins

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The Great Pumpkins

I think of you now
the farmer and the gardener
working in a field
heavily laden with bright orange melons,
loading them on wagons one by one
backs bending
many hands
careful not to break the stems.

I heard the gardener say to no one in particular
Peter, Peter Pumpkin eater
had a wife and couldn’t keep her

She cleaned off a small pumpkin and continued
put her in a pumpkin shell
and there he kept her very well

Hundreds of people came to see
what you had grown
arranged small, medium, large
the farmer stood among the magical gourds
chatting and smiling
while the gardener helped children pick just the right one,
I watched – so proud to be there –
knowing everything in the world was good.

© photo and poem by caf

The Visit

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                              The Visit

I imagine you to have perfect vision
that sees dirt in the grout,
on the floor,
cobwebs in corners,
spider web in the lampshade,
dust balls under sofas,
the disorderly garage,
cluttered studio.

I clean all day
yet intractable unacceptability
bends to no cleanser
no duster
no mop.

Finally I stop and sit
looking at my home.

I see no matter what I’ve cleaned, polished,
dusted or waxed
I’m here in the midst
of still more flaws,
my eyes eager to see you
voice ready to greet you
heart anxious to love you
arms impatient to hug you.

When you arrive in your road grimed car
I see lunch on your shirt,
nubby sweater,
lipstick smeared,
smiles stretched large around aging teeth,
saggy arms spread wide as you can get them,
and we laugh and say
how happy we are to be together

and how perfect it all is.

© photo and poem by caf