A couple of weeks ago, three poems of mine appeared in the June issue of The BeZine (the three also appear in this blog). My friend and fellow poet posted a link to the poems on Facebook, and added in a comment his own poem, Sonoma Fog, to complement the first of those three, Ground Fog. It turns out that he had been inspired to write it from David Rathbun’s poem, and today fog (poem 232), which he posted (with David’s permission) in the comments, as well. I very much liked reading the three poems together, and with the permission of David Rathbun and Mike Stone, I am now posting them together on my blog. You can read more of Mike Stone’s work on his blog.
Hinckley, Minnesota, 2002
Where the heat of the day rises to meet the cool of the evening,
sometimes a layer of fog forms above hay stubble.
An oak that survived the great Hinckley fire
over a hundred years ago waits
while white mist diffuses behind it,
stretches up and over the corn, curls down to grasses
on the other side of the field, slides out to meet the beaver pond.
Fog erases so much as it echoes the remainder of day:
the red-tail that hunted rodents this afternoon,
a garter snake that sunned in the short stubble,
rolls of hay that dot the field,
who walked out to sit and read
—all disappear in its cool insistence.
Hints of sunset still remain in the west—
where mist has not yet covered water,
bits of color reflect back from the clogged creek.
The dog and I stand still, listen to fog.
We scent the air. In the brush, a crashing sound.
and today fog
Poem 232, June 7, 2015
there is an oddness, isn’t there,
in giving taking it away,
our need like a birthmark,
or a stain.
the filling of a space will empty it.
there is an oddness, love,
an emptiness we might begin
to dry the cloth of fear.
in nothing left to take?
or doglike in a pile
sacked in self and nose,
the bloom of fur in grey regard,
heart beating singled beats.
or soil taking up the root
of ash that spread the mindless leaf
that spreads itself to sun,
its seed left to the wind.
those far away will take their turn,
we do not choose our birth
or know our death,
the filling of the space between.
soft fog in senseless white.
the mountain cloaked is lost
or stolen into particles,
dissolved in mists of everything.
closed by walls, the whitened room,
fog stealing through ash trunks
to lay its weight in meadow grass,
for inarticulate horizon.
here yet an oddness to this room,
not one thing from the window,
shrouds and gossamer,
for this we still and wait.
Raanana, June 10, 2015
You find yourself between night and morning,
Can’t sleep anymore.
You boil the coffee
And hold the steaming mug with both hands
As you stand on the old wood porch
Watching the grey fog roll down the mountain
Toward you like an avalanche of ghostly silence,
Insistent like an unrepentant memory of childhood,
But gentle, timorous,
As it nuzzles against you.
It moves into the house
Almost consciously through every room,
Sniffing the bed,
Looking for her.
You want to tell it she’s not here
But the fog swallows your words and,
Anyway there is no one to hear them.
Mike Stone’s blog