June 2018 Poetry Feature: Paul Jenkins
Golden berries on a shriveled limb,
Hanging limp with the weight of
Roots, they go deep, but now tear and
strain at the loamy bosom of time,
The sweet relief of sleep is a ruse, former
Dreams yet haunt that realm of shadow,
And diamonds are mean pebbles
In the dark, how they cut and grind in a
Cursed world of grey, where color is a trickster.
See the branches, whipped in the windy swell,
How they creak, the leaves of twilight fall and
Fold beneath the tramp of the unconscious.
The tinkle of bells, soft, imperceptible to the
Heady ambition of youth.
Spurn not that simple harmony, a soft choir
That sings only for the ears of the dying,
Those golden berries, watch them drop like the rain,
Once so proud, now they sink below the eddy of a
Rising tide, and with a final wink they are gone.
A tarnished mirror now shattered, the dream has ended,
And diamonds are mean pebbles once again,
In that icy clutch, so sweet.
Walk with me a little, down this
Battered path, beneath the canopy of
Those noble oaks and frosted pines,
Just a little further now, I swear it
Won’t be long, drooping naked trees
Hang not your heads, nothing dead
All purple hued, these reds and golds,
Through autumn’s passion thus imbued,
Shadows stretch and evening yawns
Frail and ashen, your name is in the wind,
It seems cruel and unfair, even the trees
Seem to moan, but nature does not care
That I am gone and you are left, left yes,
But not alone.
Listen to the rain, hear the heavens cry,
Feel the sun and taste the bitter ice,
First or last regardless, we all must die,
But it is the living who pay the price,
Soon you will see clearly, through better
Eyes, and behold at last, the wax and wane
Of better skies.
When darkness has fallen hard, I will
Hold your hand in the night, and
When you cry I am with you still,
At last, when death calls, meet it with
A smile, you’ll find me yet again my love,
I’ll wait for you and dream awhile,
Amongst the ferns and gentle flowers,
In a place of peace where we count not
Time by hours.