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Archive for the ‘Poetry 1980’s’ Category

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Forty years ago today – May 18th, 1980 – Mount St. Helens erupted in Washington State, killing 57 people, including one of my dearest friends, her husband, and her two young children. Most of those who died were camping in the supposed “safe zone” around the mountain. No one imagined that the volcano would explode sideways to the north, ending the lives of those who thought they weren’t in danger. (100 miles away in the Seattle area we heard two explosions, like sonic booms.)

Barb was always full of laughter, always saw the funny side of life. The poem below was written shortly after her death.  (This is a re-post.)

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Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980, at 0...

Mount St. Helens on May 18, 1980

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(In memory of Barbara Pierce Morris Seibold, 1947 – 1980)

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You laughed above the heads

of those who couldn’t see

your wings,

but those of us with vision

always flew along with you.

Even in the rain

you’d soar above the mud

with a smile and a wink.

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But just this once

your takeoff was too slow —

St. Helens grabbed you

in her smoky claws

and with one spicy belch

she burned your wings away….

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I found a bird

the cat brought in,

buried it

in forget-me-nots,

then heard your laughter

rise from the dust

and fly

to the curlicue clouds.

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(c)1980, 2020 Betty Hayes Albright

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Where’s your dance, old tree?

The wind plays –

let’s see you sway,

I long to hear

your rustling green.

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Did Autumn tighten up

your knots

and sap your limbs

too soon?

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It seems that Pan

has left you,

tail tucked between his legs

when he saw the horizon

turning black

instead of blue.

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And now I too must hurry off

to find my cave and pray

that dawn

will wring out the mourning

and wash the ash away.

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(c) 1980, 2019  Betty Hayes Albright

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This is an old one, revised. It was originally written in 1980, two months before Mount St. Helens erupted a hundred miles away from us. (A dear friend of mine died in the eruption, along with her husband and two children.)  I always assumed the poem was a premonition of that tragic event, but it seems to also fit in with current events on this dear old planet of ours.  (The original version was posted here in 2014.)

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P.S. Once again I’m behind reading blogs. Will hopefully catch up with you all soon!

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Afternoon gloom —

I know it will soon

be time to tread the snowy path home.

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A distant candle

lights the way

to my fire, my books, and my love.

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And tomorrow the sun

will rise a bit sooner

dispelling the darkness a little bit longer,

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melting away

the frostbitten edge

of this unsung penumbra of night.

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(c) 1988, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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(An old, unpublished poem, taken out of mothballs.)

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IMG_6980

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At your center

lives a piece

of the sun

waiting since always

for stillness,

for a spark of desire

to fly inward,

to focus on a Self

larger than worlds.

Dwell there awhile

and the light

will follow you home.

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(c)  1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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Photo taken in 2013

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Autumn Leaving

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Falling brittle down

through the fog

I crack and break.

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You take me carefully

to your hearth

once more –

we knew I’d never last

till winter.

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When the fog lifts

I crumble,

await another spring.

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(c) 1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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(From 1982, never before published, so pretend it’s new. 😉 )

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Almost there.

The sun slides easily

across lawns,

slips through cracks

in fences.

Sidewalks shimmy in the heat.

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I turn left

down the street

where your house,

like a crimson dragon,

rears up

on its haunches

to see how closely

I curb my wheels

this time.

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(c) 1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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(Another one re-written from 1982….)

 

 

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path in woods by Jason

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Under the jungle-wood

resting on the rock

we hauled down

from Jack’s Pass,

tree limbs hover low, and

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brush my dirt-stained feet

as I stretch

into the mesh

of heathered sunlight

through the leaves.

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(c) 1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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This is a revision of a poem written in 1982.

Photo taken by my son, Jason Judd.

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Clouds

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Clouds morphing,

chasing through the sky

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storming in a buffalo,

scooting off a lamb –

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shifty creatures

drawn by the wind.

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©  1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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(Revised from a 1982 poem.)

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Children

are free flow

like liquid gelatin,

sparkling

splashing

filling any form.

Why must we chill them,

make them set?

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(c) 1982, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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Original pencil drawing from high school,  (c) 1965

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(Poem written in 1982, re-posted from 2012)

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IMG_0261

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What is it

that makes us dream

an alternate reality

as if such possibility

had fleshed in,

begot life?

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(c) 1981, 2018  Betty Hayes Albright

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Re-posted from 2012, originally written in 1981. 

Photo taken in 2008.

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