poem: Musings in a Canyon in Autumn by Mike Glover


Sunlight, in dress and in perceptual reaches
Like fingers, like a sword with two edges,
Finds the gloaming, searches out the damp shadows of decay
And retreats in sparkling, stained, aluminum elegance.
This is the evening, the crux, the portal into
Wonder.
Aspen, in their bleached, skeletal poses, leer like wooded gargoyles at
The gathering gloom, invisible to a slow human eye.
Wood nymphs and faeries come out
Into the painted shadows, these spirits.
Ancient as rocks and really no different except for animation and
An occasional indiscretion.
The dogs are in the meadow looking for scents,
Back and forth they go, into and out of, over
And under, seeking the last remnant of a thing that has happened
But now is done, I often wonder if they feel
Like an integral part of this setting or like myself just another
Interloper?
All at once, twilight is upon us, the shadows have transformed themselves into a
Monochromatic rendition of a landscape, an unexplained sense of urgency
Insinuates itself suddenly across the windshield of my awareness.
Near panic, from the empty well, scars from my upbringing, fear of being lonely
Perhaps,
Or the final, dreadful sense of being unimportant.
We remain, less than a mile from our front door, and take a perch upon
A limestone rib so smooth and cold yet strangely inviting
A singular entity, transformed yet fixed in one
Of a hundred quadrillion moments, mine
For the time being,
Almost communing, but not.
Darkness, and the trail back, the panic
Retreated almost as quickly as it came, can’t say that
I defeated or conquered it because it always comes back.
These monsters are there, they lurk and they scheme and they impede
Every step but they are sad, I sometimes wonder if the monsters know what they are and if so
Are they afraid of each other?
Crisp, in the crazy, tilted moonlight
Seasons beneath my feet, stars in the wilderness overhead, overcome
By a threatening front, perhaps the first snow, perhaps
Not,
It never matters, the only things that ever seem to matter are the quiet musings
And the afterthoughts.
All around in the muffled stillness of snow flurry and steaming breath,
There is solitude as each thing both living and dead settles into a berth,
Of beginnings and the things that follow,
And endings and the things that follow, at last
I see the comforting glow of my porch light, floating in the frost like a phantom specter, beckoning and assuring
That it’s always a good time to go home.


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