The Seasons at Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge Poem by Michael Estabrook

The Seasons at Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge


rotted tree stumps,

splaying bright green ferns,

and skunk cabbage

and rich thick dark mud,

like a chocolate milkshake

Raining pine needles

and leaves,

and the earth

is soft and

brown beneath my feet.

Canadian geese

honk melodiously overhead.


Frozen fields dusted with snow,

frozen ponds surrounded by trees

stiff as rusted robots,

clouds are fuzzy cracks in the sky

letting out the blue.

I notice these great giant bluish fish

in the shallows, splashing and bumping

into the dried, cracked reeds, but I’m thinking again

of Christine my first girlfriend so many years ago,

remembering so clearly her dirty blonde hair,

her green eyes like dragonflies,

her soft pink lips unsoiled yet by the rigors

and toil and injustices of life.

Neanderthal Harvard Poem by Michael Estabrook


I’m in Harvard’s Widener Library,

funny place for me to be

considering my pedigree, and (let’s face it)

my basic intelligence (or lack thereof).

But I’m here taking a night class, studying

and learning, commiserating with

other students, all of whom

are smarter than me. But

if I don’t tell them that my father was

a car mechanic and his father a butcher how

will they ever know? What

would most impress me would be to earn

a PhD in Philosophy from Harvard

University (found Robert Nozick’s office,

315 Emerson Hall, stood there contemplating,

then brushed up against it, trying to

absorb his philosophic ether which

was hanging no doubt in the stale hall air).

Of course, there is as much chance

of this happening as Neanderthal coming back

to life. But I can’t fix my car either

like Dad could, so have spurned my lineage,

and am denied my academic

aspirations, caught between first

and second. Neanderthal indeed. Hey!

My daughter just scored 700

on her math SAT! Yikes! There’s hope

for us yet. Do you think they’ll clone

a Neanderthal one of these days?

freezing outside Jesus poem by Michael Estabrook

freezing outside Jesus

yes it has been a busy season

you guys definitely seem busier than

anyone else I know,

do you ever just sit and relax together,

watch a little TV, listen to some

mood music, read a book?

or is it always go go go!!!

I’m feeling very guilty I haven’t

been to Florida to visit Grandma

for so long; was going to go down when

Mom was in Africa, but then Robin

decided to have her foray

in Somerville ghetto

and I couldn’t go anywhere; so my plan

is to go down in a couple months;

my Aunt Alice (she was the one

who came to Laura’s Bentley graduation,

remember she got lost and sat on a bench

crying) is moving down near

Grandma and if all goes right

she should be settled by March;

then we can go down, see my mother

and her 2 sisters, then head over

to Kerry and Todd;

sure you want to do such a thing?

would be fun to bother Kerry again,

he’s always been an easy mark

Return from vacation poem by Michael Estabrook


After 2 weeks

on the beach in

the salt air and sun,

my return to work

wasn’t easy.

The fluorescent lights

made my eyes water;

the pounding of computer

printers and

photocopy machines

made my head ache.

I had to close

the door, closing my world

in even smaller.

I wished I was back

in college again

listening seriously this

time to Dr. Brenowitz

preach about the pleasures

of being a marine biologist,

going to sea for weeks


phytoplankton and zooplankton

and rare specimens of the

Class Hexactinellida.

(the ocean crested and

lapped at me more now that

it was far away,

so far far away.)


Sunday Poem by Wayne Jackson

this whispering morning settles
about this appled house
to start the process
of another sleepy Sunday

These coffeed comforting thoughts
melt midnight’s minutes into memory,
they have no power here
at this august desk
with my laughing pencil
in this dust filled room smelling of paper.
Pushing February back with words
hurling his icy breath elsewhere.
My boy plays outside
kicking dead sticks in tennis shoes
My wife,
humming softly a tune I do not know
forks happy dirt into flower pots.
My boy laughs
my wife sings
My pencil slides
an easy passion
on an easy Sunday