A poem about the worldwide Covid-19 Crisis
“The Lost Treasure of the Swiss Alps”
“Der verlorene Schatz der Schweizer Alpen”
The click click
of the squirrel
in the spruce tree
is the metronome
which sets the rhythm
of the alto of the blackbird
of the base of the crow
and sparrows play flutes
and bees violas
and flies violins
and the woodpecker
while the tit
The sun is conducting
Then a church bell clangs
and rouses the sleepers
from their concrete nests
And the crescendo
is the stirring of bowels
is the crunching of cereals
is the droning of traffic
as digital displays
for another day
And the clouds
And the sun
takes a bow
Advice to Poets
Keep away from nightingales –
they’re patented by Keats;
and don’t you dare touch daffodils
or ever think of wandering lonely as a cloud –
You’ll incur the wrath of Wordsworth.
Swans did you say?
Yeats will sue you;
and as long as we’re talking
steer clear of that albatross –
Coleridge can cast a curse on you.
How about stopping by woods
one evening in the snow?
Frost will run you off with a pitchfork.
Ah, but surely there’s still something
like deserts, say, and a forgotten tyrant…
it’s no go with Shelley.
Can’t even use the simple “To be” –
Shakespeare’s sapped it dry;
or a humble red wheelbarrow
glazed in the rain –
Williams will wallop you.
For heaven’s sake what’s left?
Alas, Dorothy Parker has
already poeticized that…
You might as well stop writing.
- #John #Keats “Ode to a Nightingale”
- #William #Wordsworth “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud”
- #William #Butler #Yeats “Leda and the Swan”
- #Samuel #Taylor #Coleridge “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”
- #Robert #Frost “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”
- #Percy #Bysshe #Shelley “Ozymandias”
- #William #Shakespeare “Hamlet”
- #William #Carlos #Williams “The Red Wheelbarrow”
- #Dorothy #Parker “Resumé”
My short story The Fatal i has been published in the
online magazine: Cecile’s Writers
They arrive at seven a.m. sharp
lugging their planes and saws and drills
to install the promised new windows,
windows to protect me from the world,
Triple glazed to keep out cold and noise:
neighbours who pace and argue half the night,
election promises blared from TVs,
the rain scrabbling on the sill to enter.
With fierce energy they rip out
old panes privy to secrets long dead
and with their saws chew into casements
*not opening to faery lands forlorn.
They soon have the windows mounted,
gleaming fresh as the first dawn –
then they leave like a storm dissipating,
leave me alone in the wake of silence.
Reference to #Keats’ “Ode to a #Nightingale”
They stride most serenely through city streets,
gaunt as old leather valises,
oblivious of the din, incessant honks
of tuk-tuks droning by like angry hornets;
they roam along gutters munching trash:
the stale headlines of politics,
the rancid flesh of coconuts,
the rusty grass straggling from pavement curbs –
O coy-eyed, humped cows of India,
sacred daughters of Kamadhenu,
givers of milk, curd, ghee, urine and dung,
the fivefold way of Puja,
where is Lord Krishna, the flute player,
to herd you home to buttercup meadows?