My Backyard

Poetry by Ted Boughter-Dornfeld Copyright © 2009

I’m sitting above some soil,
Is this my backyard?
No, my neighborhood is
Many miles from here.
Scores of sounds
Jump down
At different decibels
To my excited ears.
A Mexican Sun bronzes arms,
And the sky continues to stay clear.

Am I grateful for the sky?
I am grateful for the sky.

Trees plus breeze
Equals a faint whisper
Amid muggy heat.
I wish I could translate each leaf,
For the forest keeps
A language of her own.

I would like to leave my mark on this earth –
More lastingly than the Red River Maple tree,
Who leaves only a passing shadow on the ground.
And as some twisted Acacias talk about how
Long they’ve been around, I’m not so naïve,
So their noise dies down.

Just long enough
To hear my thoughts
Echo, and echo,
And stop somewhere.

Sweat beads drip down
Onto a parched porch.
Soon, the moisture is gone,
And a taciturn timber terrace
Smiles as if to say;
“I am the Sahara. I am dry.”

Shifting my gaze
Back to nature,
I center my senses,
On these different woods,
Which breathe without fences.
A gray catbird picks away at the ground,
Searching for some nourishment.

An Inca Dove flaps by noisily,
For stealth has never been his game.
A cardinal flits across the landscape,
Not staying long enough for me
To fully appreciate his crimson splendor.

A motor car rumbles by,
But soon the forest’s natural
Symphony drowns that sound.
A strand of a spider’s web
Drifts by, stealing my eyes,
For moments.

Signs of spring, of summer, of September,
Live in this place. I wonder if
My yard is blooming, too.


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