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Still Standing

"What patience a landscape has,

like an old horse, head down in its field."

-- Denise Levertov


By Sandy McPherson Carrubba

The blushing Sandia Mountains keep their watch:

guarding the searching Chicanos,

keeping safe the dwindling pueblo dwellers

while engorged Anglos gobble more land,

xpand already sprawling city limits

as they creep up the mountains

pushing to the edges of the ancient petroglyphs

whose messages scratched into rock surfaces

till celebrate life's mysterious cycles.

What patience a landscape has, like an old horse.

On pueblo mesa, designs handed down

from generations, delicate incisions

on pottery attest to beauty and survival.

Super highways dissect plateaus and bottomlands

where horses once hurried their riders.

Pueblo dwellers don't rush their intricate weaving,

their careful firing in deep pits fueled by brush and manure.

The baking of Indian flat bread means more than sustenance

while all watch a glowing sun burnish the skin of the Sandia.

What patience a landscape has, like an old horse.



Sweater (for him)

By Joanna Dicker-Bachman

Sweater for him, for fishing:

Into it, she knit fish.

Trout, true to color,

Knit into wool, pale in hue.

The wool, water, the reflection

Of the four, the hue she used.

In front, at the hem, trout

Above the pockets staggered.

On the right, the one lower.

On the left, the other, higher.

The two, leaping up, leap out.

In back, at the hem

On the left, one lower.

On the right, at the sleeve,

The other, higher:

Again, the two staggered.

Outfitted in it, he leaves.

Returning, door swung wide,

He stands in the doorjamb.

Framed there,

Catch in hand,

Trout in both the image and image

On the sweater, he says to her:

"Husband hooks trout. Wife hooks husband ..."

JOANNA DICKER-BACHMAN and her husband LARRY BACHMAN will read from their work in "Heart's Delights," a Valentine reading of tasteful, traditional poems at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Williamsville Branch Library, 5571 Main St. They own and operate Plain Poem Press.

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