Crimsoned With Joy

The Red Carpet Treatment at The Farm

And a bird overhead sang Follow,

And a bird to the right sang Here;

And the arch of the leaves was hollow,

And the meaning of May was clear.

Algernon Charles Swinburne


by Amy Lowell

Life is a stream
On which we strew
Petal by petal the flower of our heart;
The end lost in dream,
They float past our view,
We only watch their glad, early start.

Freighted with hope,
Crimsoned with joy,
We scatter the leaves of our opening rose;
Their widening scope,
Their distant employ,
We never shall know. And the stream as it flows
Sweeps them away,
Each one is gone
Ever beyond into infinite ways.
We alone stay
While years hurry on,
The flower fared forth, though its fragrance still stays.


After a long winter, there is something magical with the speed with which Minnesota transforms from brown to green.   Two weeks ago I would have bet that the crab apple trees would not be blooming by Mother’s Day and then, viola, magic happens.   All the fruit trees burst out in blossom, the linden’s perfume places you would never expect and in general I pinch myself every morning in how beautiful it is in May in Minnesota.   All of the fruit trees I planted this year came through the drought and then the record snowfall.  They are ready to grow this year.  May in Minnesota is darn near perfect, perfect temperatures, first half virtually no mosquitoes and every day a new flower blooming in the yard.   The lilacs will be up next, then the iris, then on and on.    


Smell is the Last Memory To Go

by Fatimah Asghar 
on my block, a gate
on my block, a tree smelling
of citrus & jasmine that knocks
me back into the arms of my dead
mother. i ask Ross how can a tree
be both jasmine & orange, on my block
my neighbors put up gates & stare
don’t like to share, on my block
a tree I can’t see, but can smell
a tree that can’t be both but is
on my block, my mother’s skirt twirls
& all i smell is her ghost, perfume
on my block, a fallen orange
smashed into sidewalk
its blood pulped on asphalt on my
block, Jordan hands me a jasmine
by the time i get home
all its petals are gone


April and Snow

From 90 to 28 degrees in 48 hours. Welcome to Minnesota in April!

For I have time for nothing
But the endeavour to balance myself
Upon a broken world.

Amy Lowell

April Snow

by Matthew Zapruder

Today in El Paso all the planes are asleep on the runway. The world
is in a delay. All the political consultants drinking whiskey keep
their heads down, lifting them only to look at the beautiful scarred
waitress who wears typewriter keys as a necklace. They jingle
when she brings them drinks. Outside the giant plate glass windows
the planes are completely covered in snow, it piles up on the wings.
I feel like a mountain of cell phone chargers. Each of the various
faiths of our various fathers keeps us only partly protected. I don’t
want to talk on the phone to an angel. At night before I go to sleep
I am already dreaming. Of coffee, of ancient generals, of the faces
of statues each of which has the eternal expression of one of my feelings.
I examine my feelings without feeling anything. I ride my blue bike
on the edge of the desert. I am president of this glass of water.

If you google poem, April snow, you will find a multitude of poets who took up pen at the indignation.  There is something profound about an April snow, the tenacity with which winter lingers, while our thoughts have already turned to green and growing things.  Weather does not often align with our thoughts.  I can be absolutely black on the bluest of blue sky days.  I checked all my fruit trees this week when it was over 80 degrees for four days in a row.   It looks like all survived both fauna and frost, patiently preparing for a bit more warmth to break out in bloom.  


Snow in April

by Amy Lowell
Smooth blue skies,
Fresh winds through early tree-tops,
Pointed shoots,
White bells,
White and purple cups.
I am a plum-tree
Checked at its flowering.
My blossoms wither,
My branches grow brittle again.
I stretch them out and up,
But the snowflakes fall—
Whirl—and fall.
April and snow,
And my heart stuffed and suffocating
With my blossoms brown and dropping
Upon my cold roots.