Category Andrew Hidas Poems

On Walking in Barren Woods, Alone

  ON WALKING IN BARREN WOODS, ALONE

       By Andrew Hidas

If these leaves were raindrops fallen to earth I would be slogging through mud above my shins, but dried and golden they instead yield with a delicate shrush, my only concern being to lend them my weight gingerly lest my ankle land on a hidden root or rock that sends me tumbling through the hushed forest where no other sound intrudes. Barely off the busy thoroughfare, these barren woods a sanctuary, a quietude, no engine roar nor backlit screen suggesting the constant thrum of all the otherness one shakes off one’s boots in pursuit of another rootedness, of self and silence, untethered under pure autumnal skies. This falling-fallen-decaying-renewing cycle, old as time itself, playing out from treetop to forest floor in an endless vertical loop, unmoved by humankind but subject nevertheless to its assaults...

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For the Broken-Winged Bee In Search of Its Hive

            FOR THE BROKEN-WINGED BEE IN SEARCH OF ITS HIVE 

                                        By Andrew Hidas

Such nobility in its helplessness,
Not desperate, merely determined,
Heeding no other impulse,
Following no other program
But the relentless quest
To rejoin its mates and
Once again serve its queen.

Crossing vast swaths of concrete,
Like a nomad in the Sahara
Shorn of water and shade,
Exposed and alone in the world.

Surely, such an epic endeavor
Deserves no less than a film score
With mournful violins and a cello
Accompanying each tortuous step.

Instead, an audience of two,
The only music our murmurings
Of admiration and lamentation
For this most primitive of struggles
Against the encroaching doom.

We see ourselves, of course,
In the bee’s long journey,
Seeking home and the solace of our tribe,
The temple of our familiars*
Who wait with words of balm.

Approaching...

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Mt. Royal Drive, 1959

MT. ROYAL DRIVE, 1959

The garage door—
atop which my father
placed a basketball hoop,
its backboard sawed, drilled,
painted and hoisted
by his own hands,

Against which
dodgeball epics played out
among siblings and neighbors,

Past which
we dashed in races that
began north of the driveway and
careened to the back fence,

Inside which
I smoked my first cigarette,
nervous as the homing pigeons
who pecked warily in their coop above
(another father-built project born of scrap wood and love).

The basement—
place of hiding & seeking,
caroms & checkers on
idle summer days,
where the parents retreated occasional Sundays,
locking the door with an air of authority that
required no “Do Not Disturb” sign for 8-year-old eyes.
(Two surprise sisters products of those languid afternoons…)

The breakfast nook—
Site of pancake fests and
endless torments by an older sister
artful in the ways of clandestine kicks,
where...

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My Neighbor Teaching Her Daughter to Ride a Bike on Memorial Day

A ten-minute frolic, a morning interlude of
squeals and wobbles, mother and daughter
pursuing an age-old quest of mastery on
the day we remember our war dead.

I pause in my yard work, lean on my pushbroom,
this snapshot in time collapsing into time past,
me with a firm grip on my daughter’s tiny seat
leading and guiding from behind, ever forward.

And the cascade continues, in free-fall now to
my own father, setting me free and thinking me able
as I glide toward a parked car, failing the turn and
bound for the emergency room with a broken arm.

Not everything works out as hoped, a lesson
etched into the very brows of parents grieving
still on this day, their children lost to war, the
triumph of their first bike ride now unto dust.

Balance in all things, goes the old maxim,
body and brain a holy first essential, the
child from sitting to standing, walking to
running to wheeling, set forth upon the world.

An...

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After Watching the Final Segment of PBS’s Vietnam War Documentary

***
the Fog
the Pain
the Loss
the Grief
the Waste
the Carnage
the Courage
the Sadness
the Madness
the Heartache
the Brokenness

the Remembering
the Forgetting
the Suffering
the Forgiving
the Renewing
the Honoring
the Healing
the Hoping

the Redeeming

the Madness
the Madness

the Echos

the Madness
the Madness

***

***

See 1-minute snippets of wisdom and other musings from the world’s great thinkers and artists, accompanied by lovely photography at Traversing’s 1-minute Facebook mini-blog: http://www.facebook.com/TraversingBlog

Twitter: @AndrewHidas

Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/andrewhidas/

Deep appreciation to the photographers!

Elizabeth Haslam, whose photos (except for the books) grace the rotating banner at the top of this page. Some rights reserved under Creative Commons licensing, see more at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/lizhaslam/

Library books photo by Larry Rose, all rights ...

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