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Frog on Sidewalk


There is always time to write a poem,
to focus on the small things of life;
like that frog on the front sidewalk,
less than an inch long and living
in the universe of our lawn
to feed on creatures invisible to us.
He kept still as I paused to look.

There are many like this tiny frog
who freeze as large lives pass,
who take only what they need
and hope they are invisible, hope
the grass does not get cut too short.

This poem records that this small frog
exists, that a large life took note
and did not cut the grass that day.


...Listen to this poem

9


A Breakfast Encounter


Across the table we exchange a glance,
a weatherword or two until
the intermittent signals flounder
and a long unchallenged silence
makes eating an exacting art.

Huddled around her coffee cup
her eyes and darting cigarette
stroke the empty room.

Finally she says "I want to talk!"

Her thin voice chills.

"I came from Poland, but here
the winter snow is deep."

I struggle with enduring trivialities.

"I have filled these glaciated days
with a thousand books
and children."

My attention becomes more difficult
and I fear treading
on such thin-clad tundra.

I excuse myself in an empty space
and leave without telling her
how warm the summers are.


...Listen to this poem

10