Two Poems from my recent works


November, with the humming “m"
Mellifluous inside its name,
Meanders with the now diminished stream;
The once-green tamaracks, transformed,
Have lost their golden needles, and I see
The sweeping mountain vistas
In the morning light have now regained
Their shimmering chilled clarity.
Now I imagine that a mellow
And mild drowsiness begins to take hold
In the laden rotund bodies
Of the rumbling bears
Who soon will all lie muffled deep
In humid dens, dreaming
Of what bears dream about, perhaps
The welcoming of sleep.
The meadow wind has dwindled
To a murmuring, a little less
Than any hushed and human sounds
That mingled with the golden trees
I well remember, and a little more
Than what I know will soon remain
Of memory –- brown buried leaves beneath
Mute snow heaped on the forest floor.
The year has whitened to a frost
Upon each stiff unmoving branch,
Reminding me again that I must pause
While struggling to remember
To remind myself of what is gone:
The golden needles of the tamaracks,
My dream about the dreaming bears. November,
And I’m almost ready to move on.
                  From LAUGHTER BEFORE SLEEP


Across the mountainside in evening sun
Golden October larches flare
As if they could delay dark days to come,
Winter encroaching everywhere

My momentary mind can reach.
And in the lake, silent as brooding inwardness,
The larches now are doubled, each
With a true partner in itself,

A multiplying plenitude of one,
Repeated and repeating in my mind.
Reflecting on its own reflections, stunned
With bold illumination of a kind

Beyond what golden sunlit larches teach
Of how to face the all-dividing dark, I find
A multiplying plenitude of one
Across the mountainside in evening sun.
-Robert Pack from Elk in Winter
(Photo by Dan Spencer)