, Gloucester, MA


September 14, 2013

My View: Poet laureate Rufus Collinson

I had emergency surgery in July and have been in rehab and recovery mode ever since.

Now as I return gradually to life’s routines, I discover that one of the biggest comforts has been observation of nature.

This has put me in mind of this poem, which I wrote during a particularly hard time.

Just today, during a stressful moment, in a hurry and having the cut bridge go up just as I approached it, a huge dragonfly landed on my windshield. It stayed long enough for me to observe it closely. Since then, I have been researching dragonflies in preparation for the next poem.

The Doe Under The Crabapple Tree

I came upon a doe

under the weighted skirt of misty night

and the loaded crabapple tree.

I’d come to walk off a day of life,

the defeats and demands

of trying to be a good person

at home and in the office.

I heard the munching of the apples first,

imagined the tart sweet taste

of their rosy smallness.

In the quiet dark,

I heard her breathing

and then slowly the parting mist

and adjustment of my eyes

revealed her form of matchless grace.

There was nothing else but her

and a desire to get closer.

I began to speak in soothing tones,

“Hello there, beauty, hello...”

She stayed and listened,

her head cocked to one side and the other,

her long ears quivering with reception.

I was in the presence

of all I wanted to be

in the space we made together,

her exquisite beauty almost holy,

my clumsy tumbler of compassion.

She let me come close enough to touch

before she turned

to part the night

with arcs of fleeting light

and the guileless part of me.

Ruthanne “Rufus” Collinson is poet laureate for the city of Gloucester

Text Only | Photo Reprints