Letter to My Love, Flouting Miles

 

 interminable slumber

Letter to My Love, Flouting Miles

Dear Bob: Though the maps may superimpose
their abject separateness upon the thousands of miles
between us with traditional lettered-&-numbered-grids;
& though your birth into this timeline sixty years ago
graced the cosmos just shy of twelve earth-years
(also known as a full cycle of the Chinese zodiac)
before mine, I dare say that you & I are timeless—
certainly no less so than those archaic dragons
whose subterranean nests we are to extrapolate
from the fumaroles erupting at the maps' folds.

Of course, such implications of fierceness
can seem forbidding…
But for all the scaly terror of their talons
& spiky tails quaintly curled around caches
of sapphires, emeralds & gold medallions,
what those beasts are best known for
is interminable slumber, whereas we are wide awake—
besides, however notoriously considerable
our sundry existential concerns tend to be,
no one would fault us dogs for not knowing
our way home!
 
Long before I even knew I knew you,
something in me knew you were my One,
which is how I know I will find my way to your arms,
where I will remain yours forever, Stephanie.
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Trace

Trace
For Bob

In your morning pouring of coffee,
eggs whisked, peppers diced,
& pancetta browning; in the unsolidified
splatters you cleanse from the countertop;

in Pandora’s box of Edgar Meyer phenotypes
unseating the disquietude of our former lives;
in afternoon cappuccinos you pronounce in Italian
& in your full belly’s tranquil cogitations;

in your evening removal of socks & your feet’s relief;
in your crescent smile’s light sheltering me,
& with my kisses pressing away the decades of iniquities

to trace their thoroughfare to my universe of courage
secured within the dimple of your left cheek—
is everywhere my home will be.

STEPHANIE L. HARPER

Two Valentine’s Day Poems

keep-calm-and-make-it-so

For Mike

1. First Date with The Next Generation

In the Engineering Research Building
the wall in his cubicle proudly donned
a life-sized poster of Jean-Luc Picard 

I hid the double-take (or, tried to); he later massaged
the crick in my neck, a liberty allowed by a Liberal Artist
donning naught above the waist but her bare pride…

Marriage of the proverbial hemispheres ensued.

 

2. Somehow, Swept Off My Feet

Though one task at hand must be completed, before you attempt
(or become conscious of) the next, and I blaspheme those tinselly,
emblematic bits of solder accumulating beneath our feet,

then breathe long sighs of relief when you finally sweep them
into sparkly heaps and throw them away; I realize, too, that neither
the privilege of living with an Engineer in his natural habitat, nor

my Work in Progress status, are honors bestowed frivolously.

 

Once, again, I’ve stepped into the Wayback Machine to retrieve these relics from the valley of yester-yore upon which the fuzzy fog of middle age has since permanently settled. Here’s to those things of beauty in our lives that never change!

Wishing all you poets and engineers, alike, out there a very happy Valentine’s Day!

Anniversary #18

Mike and I celebrated our 18th anniversary on January 23, 2016, but I thought this poem would make a great post for Valentine’s Day… The photo I’ve chosen to accompany my poem is of a bird I’m particularly in love with — he is a Cob named Bryn, and he is the devoted mate to a Pen, Wynn. They are a glorious pair whose annual brooding and chick rearing on the moat of Bishop’s Castle in Wells are meticulously covered by brilliant photographer, Will Glenn. In this shot, Bryn’s industrious foraging in support of his mate and their progeny is not only noble and adorable, but it reminds me of Mike’s constant efforts to be a nurturing, responsible husband and father, and ever-evolving human being, who inspires me in more ways than I could ever express!

To all you lovebirds out there:

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

bryn_s_bottom_by_earthhart-d8efjc7

Photo by Will Glenn: EarthHart.deviantart.com

An engineer has just so much to say
With breath, enthusiasm, eye-contact—
And words seldom emerge in shades of gray,
But it’s your love that keeps my heart intact.

You’ve seen me at my worst and never balked,
You’ve seen me giving birth, begging for drugs,
Stood by when even I could not have talked,
And let me hide while you’ve dispatched gross bugs.

Your actions are a testament to Love
That has no need of meter, trope, or rhyme—
Lip-service, poets know, is not enough
To build a life that stands the test of time.

For eighteen years (and more!) I’ve loved you—that’s no bull!
I know I’m blessed to have a heart that feels so full!

STEPHANIE L. HARPER