From the Plains
The day began with a nor wester,
storms expected by nightfall.
The wind blew wildly
as if you could soon be
the last person on the planet.
Blinds rattled. Doors slammed.
People of the plains
fear what can’t be seen.
Clouds brightened to red
On the veranda, I painted
a blanket of land and sky
to wrap about me
to sleep inside till dawn.
What Trees Remember
Holding their space in the forest, trees remember
starlight filtering to warm, dark earth
and the sound of the violin
before the violin was made.
Bark gathering moss, trees recall
giant birds flying from mountains
and songs made by fluttering wings
as birds built their nests.
Touching branch to branch, trees
share stories of sailing ships
their ancestors held inside
before the world became a globe.
Books and newspapers come and go.
Trees think back to when the first seed split.
The Empty Seat
Our walks beside water, punctuated
by gnarled sticks and steep steps
took us above thoughts we carried,
across long grass to where we could read
beyond the story so far,
the history of bodies and bones.
Who was it, we asked, who made this place?
But not on the first visit, not right away.
Repeated, the walk became a ritual
something known, but still holding
mysteries like a quest. The last time
we got as far as the seat
we saw its frame clasped to sky and cloud,
sniffed in the breeze the season changing.
Michael Mintrom is from Aotearoa New Zealand and lives in Australia. His poems have appeared in various literary journals in those two countries, such as Landfall, Meanjin, Meniscus, takahē and Westerly. Other recent work can be found in The Drabble, The Ekphrastic Review, Literary Yard, The Metaworker, Quarterly Literary Review Singapore, and Shot Glass Journal.
The Ekphrastic Review
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