Tag Archives: oak

genius loci

near year’s end I stand
beneath the oak shorn of leaves
dreaming stars unseen

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© Gregory V Driscoll  2016


walking in the woods

spring   blithe young maples
flirt  then cavort with the wind
the old gray oak scowls

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© Gregory V Driscoll  2015


oak at the corner
a gray forbearing giant
starlings   wrens   take heart

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(c) Gregory V Driscoll  2013

Walking in the rain

Walking around in the rain can be a pleasant experience when it’s warm;  you just know that, even if you’re soaked to the bone, you’re not likely to shiver, or quiver, or shake with chills.

But walking in rain in the near wintry days of November or the late Winter days of early March is a gruesome task, a punishment, almost like being in a dark, dank, flowing dungeon, waiting for the rats to appear, and – uh, oh – that shadow up ahead may be the guillotine.

At last, relief!  A cruel respite but release from the cold rain nonetheless. (But, really, what is that thing up ahead?  Oh, yes! Of course!  The massive hulk of the oak near the turning of the path…)

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(c) Gregory V Driscoll  2012

Homeward Bound

Against the wind, under the clouded sun,
pushing homeward on the return
half of my daily walk, my legs weren’t
so much tired as frozen, almost
like cold metal pistons beneath
the blue fabric of my jeans.  I headed
for Elaine’s store, ostensibly
to buy lottery tickets, but really
to warm up for a few precious minutes.

As I folded the tickets and put them
into my ragged wallet, Elaine said,
“You’re a brave one going out walking
in weather like this.”  She smiled.
I smiled back. “You’re really kind, Elaine –
anyone else would have said I’m crazy.”
I turned to leave.  She laughed softly.
I pulled open the metal-trimmed glass door.
As the rackety wind dashed in,
she called out in a louder, sparkling voice,
“And that too!”  I pulled the door closed.

Once more walking against the wind,
scuffling under the clouded sun,
I thought I heard her laughter still.
It was the wind, wrangling with the branches
of nearby pine trees and a leafless oak.

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(c) Gregory V Driscoll  2012


Support the sky, you wizened trees!
Hold your hard sinewy limbs aloft
to touch heaven’s face in Spring
with your unfolding leafy palms,
emerald, olive, lime, and jade.

Dance shamelessly with the Summer wind!
Rock the sun in your woody arms!
Let the rains turn your gray trunks
dark with their teeming liquid kisses!

In Autumn’s dusk, maple and oak and pine,
horse chestnut, myrtle, sycamore and birch –
dark sentinels of steadfast courage.
Bright messengers of fortitude at dawn,
scatter your raiment to the four winds!

Dear reminders of the cycle of life,
you keep singing of wonder
even as you shiver and creak and moan
in the North Wind’s frozen embrace.

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© Gregory V Driscoll  2011