Prompt Images

I: Along rifted ice


Moonlight blanched against the rift ice

A still capturing animated light.

Forever twisted, gnarled and lurching.

A lone shorebird found in the features

of this frozen landscape.

Trapped in eternal youth through

An ephemeral medium.


Would it forsake such youth to take

flight again?  Finding joys and follies

once more over the Michigan shore.


What Fortune enamored it to this

Place for too long a time– had it the

Wisdom to consider the temporal

Present.  Where was the failure in Warmer climes,

only to submit to Love’s first selfish impulse.

In its vain need for altruism, for how can so

Familiar a sentiment cause a simple life so much pain?


II: Squall speaking with Michigan Shore


It started that evening out on open seas

The place rain would fall drumming,

Beating a heavy cadence in procession

across the water.  Should I find a more

precise a symmetry, where on that

temporal plane balanced so finely

tumult and serenity.


What face, what face of primal alien solitude

far beyond brevity in the bend of the horizon

from some aeon unknown came its beatitude

that it estranged me from that spot.


The rain, it will end turning that beauty

and terror to the mundane,

until only I remain: salient a little longer

before I too return from whence I came.


III: Vapor imprints


Spirit, temporal and inexhaustible,

Whence risen vapor in the great

Atmosphere, only to resulting in

Dissipated heat like steam on the

Northern Lakes.


Listless the sea smoke stays: starting, failing,

Drifting ever further from the sun, yet

Permanently stalled in spite of the winter cold,

It refuses to sink for some errant memory.


Illegible and untenable, and all the same

persistent. What silent witness bears

your shapeless testimony?


Was it mine to understand or forget,

Yet to hold forever that obligation


John Taylor

John Taylor works in the Green Industry. One salient question he has remains how an Adirondack chair, a wooden piece of lawn furniture, is that comfortable, and what does it have to do with Upstate New York?

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