by Ethel Mortenson Davis
moon of the blackberry month,
snags at me,
rips at my skin.
and get caught
in her sweet clutches,
but are overtaken
by a storm
with brittle, scratchy fingers
that blackens out the moon.
Now we must wait
for the harvest moon
as she ripens
on top of the waters.
Note: This is Ethel’s contribution to the moon-night organized by Francha Barnard and Write-On Door County.
by Thomas Davis
“The storyteller moon,” the old man said.
We sat upon the long-grassed beach and stared
Into a sky now dark, the fiery red
of sunset flung at stars the sky had snared
Into a symphony of silver stained
Into a river of eternal light
Above the song of waves that, lapping, trained,
Like time, into the shores of moon-struck night.
“No, not a storyteller moon.” He sighed.
“That comes just as the winter starts to howl.
That’s when you tell the stories that are tied
Into a tree frog’s peeps or black bear’s growl.”
Moon-struck, star struck, we heard the lullabye
Of waves absorbing us into the sky.
Last night Ethel and I traveled to Newport Beach where the Door peninsula looks out on the wild waters of Death’s Door, Buttes de Mortes. Francha Barnard had invited us to join her and other Door County poets to write poems beneath a full harvest moon.
On Saturday night the moon had been full and orange as it rose over Door County, but, after a summer that has seen the corn shriveled from drought, we drove up the peninsula to the park beneath cloudy skies that rained off and on. By the time we reached Newport Beach it was clear that none of us were going to take lawn chairs in the darkness down to the beach unless we wanted to ruin the tablets we’d all brought with us and got thoroughly soaked.
Instead we went to the ranger’s front office, talked awhile, and then, stymied from our effort to write poems beneath a full moon, listening to waves singing onto beach sand, we sat down and tried to write a poem nevertheless. Both Ethel and I, in the miracle of being with other poets, succeeded.
Terza Rima Sonnet
by Thomas Davis
As dip-si-doodled as a particle
Inside the zipping universal whiz,
I stretched into a rusty horse and peered
At cultured woods that felt the guttural,
Mute roaring of a monster’s metal fizz
That jawed into a garden’s winsome weird.
Then, as an old farm’s walls grew images,
And glass shapes whirled with colored curves of light,
I felt creation’s fires congeal and mold
Into a spirit drawn from circuses
Born from the striving of an artist’s flight
Through zoos of sight, sound, thoughts, the manifold
Of what could be if chaos suddenly
Became a rusty horse whose eyes can see.
a photograph by Ethel Mortenson Davis
photograph by Sonja Bingen
a photograph by Sonja Bingen
poem by Ethel Mortenson Davis
We walked Michigan’s shore
against gale winds,
churning up white foam
and throwing large rocks
at our feet
until a stand of cedars
offered warmth and stillness
from the wind.
lined the forest floor, softness,
respite from our difficult world.