By Marilyn Zuckerman
I’ve been sitting
on your beautiful deck
imagining I am
on the deck of a steamer
although I am listening as well
to the pileated woodpecker
a few blocks below me
(unless it was a neighbor
but, no it had that intermittent
So thank you.
The deck for me is the star of the show for one who can no longer travel. It is my ship reaching out to the Sound and to the mountains and to go on sea voyages. So I’m almost surprised not to feel the swell, not to get seasick.
When one is of ripe old age, it is easy to imagine many things as one watches the sea and the earth with its billions of years – earthquakes, mudslides, floods and death that old trickster lurking.
on the deck in the dark
in a steamer chair
counting airplanes and Christmas lights
instead of stars
watching the storm break—
breathing fresh air
staring at the Sound
for this is what I came for
I said I wanted a deck to see the world from, a balcony of cables so slender you could forget they were there. I said I wanted something spacious, I wanted sun and shade and now here’s the railing burnished red, there the fragile cords fine as threads. Now someone as restless as me is calmed by the scene before me – the sea, the trees tumbling to the ground, the wild wind singing.
Crows: An Anthropomorphic Poem
What do two crows say to each other
sitting on a wire above the deck
staring as I am at the sunlit waters of Puget Sound
sometimes posing in haughty indignation
beaks at dueling position
a high wire act
as one sidles over in sad supplication
maybe we can stop tormenting eagles
and settle down
spend more time together
though he has clearly
begun to feel
the lure of a quiet life
when one flies off
the other follows in hot pursuit
· · ·
Dedicated to Louise Wright who designed not only the deck, but so much of the house.
These poems form the second installment in an ongoing sequence about the construction of my home—read the first here.