To Join the Living

Spring is rising
as mountain snows melt,
seeking out what lingers
of melancholia and fear
stored in winter dark.
We launch into the river,
skirting between freighters,
under steel web bridges,
finding our pace
in the wind driven chop.
Time to come out
and feel the urge
of falling water,
the hot touch of sun,
to join the living
as our old friend waits
in his ice clawed cave
brooding over December.



Watercolor by Eilish Hynes


10 Responses to “To Join the Living”

  1. John Lamb says:

    Don: Couldn’t have been posed more perfectly……Portland rises out of the shadows of the wet spring clouds and the river water holds the anticipated suspense of hooking a spring Chinook…..

  2. Tom Figel says:

    Don, hot touch of sun indeed! Eighty degree weather when I came to Vancouver, BC a few days ago.

  3. Tom Wilson says:

    Lovely poem, Don. In Taoism, Winter is the water element–the source that makes things green.

  4. David Barnes says:

    Lovely poem Don! I vividly recall a dark Winter Cycle of my life where melancholy and fear lingered through long days, months and even years before the coming of a new and enduring Springtime, which now moves graciously into the bright promise of productivity – time to come out, no brooding over those December dark womb-time unknowns. Your poetry includes all within the sweep of its great spheres, and always the horizontal and vertical cross at the center of a Great Promise, akin to the gorgeous painting by Eilish. Grateful. db

  5. Time to come out of hibernation and start expressing LIFE again!

  6. James says:

    Spring is here, the grass has riz !

  7. Maria Frid Jimenez says:

    Yes, to chafe inward in the cave seems so irrational when we can meet the sun’s warming and encouraging rays…….thank you again, Don!

  8. Elizabeth Nunn says:

    It seems to me what you’re referring to is what I know as becoming tough, absolute, and exercising power to say, “No more”. The “hot touch of sun” is to express the powerful force of Love in my living, first with myself and into my world. Generations old family issues is a good place to start! And as I do so, I breathe a deep breath of release as I intentionally make space for true design to take unexpected form that fills me with awe and, sometimes, giggles.

  9. Pichay says:

    But, Winter has at least one more at bat…Portland rain turning into Montana snow. No hurry to leave my cave…I know better.

  10. Bobby Able says:

    Even at our age it’s nice to hear that spring motivates you.

    My dad is the last person I remember using the word “chop”. I remember getting out on the Columbia a “few weeks too early” and experiencing “chop” … Sometimes is was 4′ high. My Dad loved taking us out on the water, even if it was still winter.

    Poetry should evoke memories that inspire us. So often you reach into my mind and pull out my most memorable times.

    Thank you.

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