By: James G. Piatt
Thoughts in the Night
The night is almost silent, only the gentile tic-tocking sound of the old grandfather clock heralding in the late hours, and the soft din of my thoughts stream softly into the atmosphere. Another day has passed and only its memories are still floating hazily in my mind as I sit and quietly ponder upon existence, aging, and death.
I Looked for You
I looked for you in the apricot dawn, when the temperate breeze whistled up the hollow and curled around gnarled oak and white faced sycamore trees, during the time when warmth was born and the melancholy of winter was carried away into the past, and where nostalgic memories of spring washed away cold winter thoughts of aging which impeded the pulse of living.
I looked for you at the beginning of a poem, and in the fading flame of a candle in the Apse, and the meadow where young coyotes ran across the green pasture towards the shadows, and bronze tailed hawks soared down from tall and gnarled oak trees, and in the back yard where song sparrows flew into the bird feeder from the safety of the pink lady bushes with their sparkling blushing blossoms.
I looked for you behind the pepper tree searching for sky, as the sun gleamed through the red orbs and formed dreams, and a great horned owl swooped down from the tall sycamore tree and landed on the blackness of a telephone line where invisible time leaned into the sun’s rays, and colored the grayness with yellow, and in in the orchard where new blossoms were starting to burst into being with pink leaves.
I looked for you in the fragrances of wildflowers in the nearby meadow, where my imagination saw you astride a grey Arabian horse riding up the gulley to where the morn’s beginning sat in the barefooted warmth of existence near our farm house where old memories were stored in leather covered albums, and the dull eyes, and faded smiles of long gone relatives stared out at the walls of the living room, and your footsteps neared my thoughts.
I looked for you in the chords lingering in the atmosphere of an old spinet piano, where you played Beethoven, Mozart, Bach, and Debussy, and the music soothed my weary mind when our clocks pealed away the withering time near the tabernacle of hope, which held our dreams, and even in the clouds where angels swept away the fears of man, and their voices spoke in new tongues to assure us about eternity, but you were not there either.
I finally looked for you in the herb and rose garden, where green tendrils of mint, Basal, Thyme, Sage, and Oregano were bursting though the soft and rich soil begging to exist again, and maroon leaves were hugging on to stems that held rose buds waiting to burst into the atmosphere, where honey bees and butterflies flitted here and there waiting for the rose’s sugar, and I found a beautiful elderly lady, on her knees with trowel in hand, digging into the soft rich soil removing weeds and smiling, and your thoughts neared my heart.
I may not be able to observe red tailed hawks soaring high into the clouds filled with the tears of the old ones, while strolling in a verdant forest, nor see tiny brooks full of droplets of blue moisture from spring’s showers while hiking in the woods, or meander beside a river as it flows lazily through a meadow filled with colorful wildflowers.
I may not be able to go to the ocean and see the tide’s white whiskered waves flowing onto the hot sad, or watch gulls and terns screaming as they scramble for tasty morsels in the incoming kelp, nor bask on the hot sand, under the glowing sun, while the incoming tide cools the sand.
All these things will someday be beyond my grasp, and such things will eventually fade into the twilight, as the hours slowly ebb away but I will always retain beautiful images in my memories.
How, Why and Where
How do the leaves know when to turn yellow and fall to the ground,
How do the Oak’s acorns know how to form perfect ovals,
How do roses know how to form beautiful petals with sweet aromas,
How do the stars know how to sparkle, on a cold December night,
How does the moon create its round shape as it circles the lazy earth?
Why does the ocean send its white tipped waves to sandy shores,
Why do huge clouds drop their moisture in perfect droplets,
Why does the heart of man carry misery and happiness at the same time,
Why are there so many, sad children, homeless people and refugees, and
Why does one yearn for more years as their rusted hours fade into eternity?
Where does humanity go when brutes flood the land with false hope,
Where do angels hide when dark clouds laden with gloom fill the air,
Where do honest men go when being honest is no longer sanctified,
Where do refugees go when no country wants their children, and
Where can a nation without values go without exploding into obscurity?
The House on the Knoll
The old saltbox house on the knoll sits in anonymity as the sounds of night creatures echo through its empty rooms.
It is a rainy night in the country; coyotes are yelping in the distance, and an owl is hooting its lonely plea into the mist of the
In the emptiness of the fading hours, the old house cricks and moans as the rain batters its siding and the wind twists through leaf filled eaves.
Reciting an old memory, a broken clock peals out the hours to a ghost in the kitchen who cannot sleep because of her memories of living.
The Old Photo Album
Bronze church bells ringing in the far distance
Like the flailing of butterfly wings:
People gather with damp tissues and
Silence… wooden casket,
The winter day in its dark hazy hue merges with
The whirling voice of fading memories:
Those who understood him discover an
Unfamiliar absence… in time,
Vanishing, fading memories:
Some time in the future, a faded photo would remain
In a dusty picture album beside other departed friends,
And someday, in the suddenness of an obscure night,
We with earthly time ending will wander to that place too,