Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Quiet Waters


photo via Unsplash


In that last year, I circled the lake,
investigating every cove along the shore
until I discovered the outfall --
a small stream that would carry me away,
silently slipping into quiet waters
where a single paddle stroke would do,
where simply floating for an entire morning
would be an acceptable option.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021

Friday, August 20, 2021

Ode to the Hummingbird

(after ODE TO DIRT by Sharon Olds; line 10 was lifted from her poem)

Dear Hummingbird, I’m sorry I doubted you,
I thought you would only come to carefully tended sugar feeders.
Turns out, those zinnias I planted on a whim
in between the iris after they finished heralding summer
with their purple flags and sharp green blades
and also the sweet peas that come up every year
camouflaging the chain link fence with a curtain
of pink polka-dotted greenery
are all you need. O hummingbird,
help us find ways to serve your life,
you who bless our early evenings with the miracle of your hover-flit-sip
(pausing occasionally to perch and preen)
you who ask only that we cultivate an altar of beauty
where together we can worship.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021

Friday, August 13, 2021

Things to Do if You Are a Road Trip

image via Unsplash

Things To Do If You Are A Road Trip

Perch hawks on fence posts.

Pinwheel the wind farms.

Create curiosity with road cuts.

When a trailer tire ahead shreds

     let all who follow dodge the pieces.

Conveniently space rest stops and gas stations.

And as for destinations,

     if they do not include the open arms of family or friends,

     make every traveler feel welcome.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021

Friday, August 6, 2021

Passing the Torch

Passing the Torch

I shake the flame out of my matchstick;

(one flame dies so another can grow)

cup my hand around the candle’s burning wick.

Nothing about this process is quick.

(light one, expect others to follow)

Again, I shake the flame out of my matchstick,

discard it with a flick,

(travel light, shed unnecessary cargo)

cup my trembling hand around the candle’s wick

and listen to the clock tick-tick-tick.

(there’s no stopping time, I know, I know)

I shake and the flame goes out of my matchstick.

This is no magician’s trick --

(it’s a hard pill to swallow)

the cup of hand around the candle’s burning wick

is merely the arithmetic

of love caught and held in a minute glow.

And so I shake the flame out of my matchstick; 

cup my hand around the candle’s burning wick.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021