Weather Beaten Path
Florida’s sultry wind
blows sour weed and roses,
palmettos and magnolias,
the Pensacola ground
Seminoles, and Americans
depriving it of birth,
and pinks the cheeks
Destin’s sugar white shore.
The tropical storm’s rain
overfills Suwannee’s edge,
rages away stubborn sandbags
and Confederate tombstones,
puts the child
asleep in Grandma’s
arms, while the old
tin roof on the shack
that was saved
sings her lullaby.
My Panhandle from a Cracker Barrel Rocker
My Panhandle’s western red sky,
is the backdrop for skyscraping Long Leaf pines
no longer yielding to every breeze,
but saluting in the stillness of the setting sun.
Thickets of wild Yaupon
bear leaves for an ancient tea
and let the sun peak through
their gnarly branches as the timely orb lowers
itself for rest.
As I rock to and fro on the front porch,
my V.I.P. seat to a private art gallery,
there is still enough light
to say goodnight to pink fluffs of Mimosa,
and, if I’m lucky,
after rising from their camouflaged bed of Palmetto fans,
I’ll see a doe with a fawn or two
cross the dirt drive in search
of new growth along their path.
Closing my eyes, I imagine other days,
when satin Magnolia blossoms, sweet honeysuckle,
or laden Crepe Myrtle trees take center stage.
Sitting here, with my iced tea, hearing the creak
of my Cracker Barrel rocker, the tinkle of ice on glass,
and the sounds of the night coming upon me
in their predictability, there’s two things for which I’m most grateful—
a screened-in porch, and the fact Papaw’s
still with us to recite his nightly colorful command:
Keep that porch door closed!
These Flareeda skeeters are fornicatin’ tonight;
might carry off the cats!