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John Caddy
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John Caddy's
Morning Earth Poems
February 200


Morning after new snow:
Bright sunlight bounces
from every crystal into air
leaps into every eye that drinks
the bright blue bowl of sky.

Verbs are often the roots of metaphor. Can sunlight leap? Can eyes drink? Absolutely. Urge writers toward using words in unusual ways.


This fog is as almost white
as the melting snow that mothered it.
My eyes hang within a droplet mist
that suspends all distances and time.
At the edges gray trees lift out of sight.
Earth is strange and pale until
bluejays arrive and remember sky.

  As snow slumps into itself,
small birds foraging in the prickly ash
announce the future
in voices winter-thinned but
sweet to the ear as nests and spring.


It is crucial to be attuned to the everyday nature around you. Being attentive to earth will open doors that our society tends to keep closed.

Find the promises in what you observe in nature. The promise the bluejays make is that the sky will be blue again. Bird-twitter promises the coming spring.



How thick was it?
Leguminous green soup.
Couldn't cut it with a proverb's knife.
Couldn't find my hand with both eyes..
A crow tried to fly by,
but he blurred into white
and vanished from sight.

  In the fog
a chickadee:
Poor me, poor me.

Include the human in nature: we are part of the whole. Unlearning that fact is the grief of the past; time to put it right. Play with words.



Wild turkeys wear the feet of dinosaurs,
huge scaled feet, strong and clawed.
Yesterday as the flock emerged from fog
and time, feet shone with wet like chain mail.
As rain soaked their feathers down,
their wild shapes hunched against it
and their naked throats pulsed red.



Before the Thaw

Three muscular horses
play "Chase me!"
through their white pasture,
rollicking like colts, suddenly
accelerate into
the thud and thud of hooves.

Note things that animals do that remind us we are all family. In play, in curling to sleep, in yawning, our cousins are us.



When fog lifts
Heart lifts,
And the red brush lifts
of smiling Fox
who trots across the road
flag high, bright eye.
We lift together in the clear
crisp of morning,
the simple saving glory of the sun

Notice and note the simple gifts of earth that redeem us and unite us with other lives.



  Canada Geese bugle now
and fly across the tender sky
as if Spring has early sprung, unfrozen
pools in nesting grounds
have them fooled,
even though days are short
and nights still linger long.

Don't Bite the Thunder

Two young cats sit entranced
before the windowglass,
watching sudden rain sluice down.
When Thunder rumbles loud & long,
they crane heads high
curious to see the maker, mouths
just parted, as if to bite.
Careful boys, it’s one of those
guy things to avoid.
If thunder is bitten,
kittens will be smitten.

A simple observation is just fine as an entry. It does not have to reach for meaning, and does not have to "go somewhere." It can simply describe, as if to say, "Look what I saw, share this with me."

Rhymes of more than one syllable are funny, often corny. The same thought using 'bite' and 'smite' would be less fun. Besides, how often do you get to rhyme kitten with something beyond mitten?