So many poems about morning, of dawn, rebirth, and coming light,
of brightness and glory, lifted thought,
awakening, flow, and calm...
Sometimes I wish the ripe grain
were not always so soundly threshed
and every kernel shucked clean, leaving me
a gleaner with no part in the harvest.
I could revel in a congress of birds' songs
and new light pouring across my lawn,
buffeting the volunteer sunflower,
lighting corn tassels in my garden,
glancing off my neighbor's house and into trees.
I could make metaphors:
the morning breeze is a young cat,
fresh from napping, rummaging tree tops,
leaping the rose hedge, disturbing a bean row,
stirring at my feet.
I could say that morning mist fixes distance
in optical limbo, like those eerie backgrounds
in da Vinci's paintings - the land beyond
Leda, Mary, and Saint Anne vanishes toward
empyrean mountains with high peaks
yet to be scaled and mapped by the Master.
I may write no brisk verse of solemn strain
to equal Milton's far beaming blaze of Majesty
(often, fields of language seem winnowed clean).
Still, even when the rime comes hard,
I like mornings when I can sit quietly
on my back porch and feed exquisitely
on whole milk and bowls of hot cereal.