Menu

Poetry

The thing about nature is
it doesn’t need coaching. Fire
flares true, first strike out of a match.
Infant waterfalls sing like experts.
Acorns squeeze out oaks, each leaf
a born breather. Even Darwin’s mutations.
Paragons. Every one a prima donna,
a first fiddle.
_____________So is it not strange—
child of nature that I am—to wake
each day having to slog through scales?
Today, I’m practicing happy.
First step—the smile.
I’ve whitened my teeth, massaged all
facial muscles, rouged up, and positioned
myself in front of the mirror.

Suddenly a bee, big as a blackberry,
bumbles against my window, knocking
for attention. Rolling in azalea cups all morning,
she weaves in slow motion then hovers
like a helicopter, humming
to herself. The key, C major.
No black notes, no sharps, no flats.
Only naturals—the fan of her own wings,
the bliss of her own buzz.

She doesn’t practice.
She doesn’t have to. She knows.
To make honey, you follow the dance.


The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Access one piece of artwork every month for free! To experience the full archive, log in or subscribe.

Related Poetry

abstract image of a window with scratches and dew on it, background is green and murky and blurry.

Sudden Death

By

Richard Michelson

photos of three large mirrors on a wall outside, the first reflecting two people's heads at the bottom of the shoreline, the second reflecting a man walking on th beach, and the third reflecting the road to the beach.

Another Holocaust Poem

By

Richard Michelson

blurry forests shot through with blue and green light.

Bystander

By

William Coleman

shot of a green forest with tall pine trees.

Medieval Miniatures: Entry into Jerusalem

By

Dan Murphy

Pin It on Pinterest