Barbara Brooks, Author, Poems, Poet, The Catbird Sang, Hillsborough, Orange County of North Carolina, Finishing Line Press.
TheCatBirdSang.com
 

Published Poems by Barbara Brooks

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CARRYING YOUR ASHES HOME
TRACKS
TURKEY VULTURE
TURNOUT
WAITING AT THE LEK

CARRYING YOUR ASHES HOME

Old tires are buried in a playground, or tied
by rope to a tree limb over the river
just waiting for a swing. My tires were worn
but lasted long enough to take you to the vet.

Filled with begonias, some are painted white, jagged teeth
like the ventricular tachycardia on your EKG.
Others are tossed into a ditch to collect rain water
and mosquitoes. Piles burn uncontrolled, the tumor
pressed on your heart. In August two-a-days, football players
step through tires snaked out on the ground.

With new tires, I carry you home.

Broken Plate

TRACKS

Winter gray, the sanderling
skitters along the receding wave,
probing bubbles for dinner.
A lone line of prints laces

the damp sand like veined leaves.
Others join the bird, their tracks
woven together in the ebbing.
The flock flees a surge,

leaving only the one.
Looking over its shoulder,
does the bird see its single
line of tracks, filling?

Bishop's House Review

TURKEY VULTURE

The black wing
      scythes the thermal
        falling lower or rising

higher on the turn
      of a feather.
        Swooping low,

the bird scans the earth
      for the dead
        or the solitary.

Vulture, knife down,
      probe deep, cut
        these memories

     so I can slice
        the wind.

Bishop's House Review

TURNOUT

Two horses, damp from their baths,
stride beside me.
Walking to the pasture,
their iron shoes ring on concrete.

An Audi speeds
towards us,
spewing dust.
Rich car, I mutter.
We stop.
The car passes.

Framed in the receding
rear window, a young face
strains to watch us until the car
rounds the corner
and she can see no more.

I turn the horses out,
they run to friends,
leaving me behind.

I think back
thirty years, see a face
in the faded Chevy
wishing she had horses
to turn out.

Cold Mountain Review

WAITING AT THE LEK

In the mist-black dawn,
house finches rustled
in the leaf-bare cottonwood.
Prairie wind celloed
through withered grass.
Above the plain,
ancient leks were quiet
until sharp-tailed grouse
began to display. their purple sacs
oboed into the brightening day.
As afternoon dusted
into evening gray,
sandhill cranes, heads
capped in port wine red,
returned to the Platte.
Flocks flew in from
the fields covering
silted waters
like a growing blanket.

Traditional mounds disappear
under shopping malls,
rivers are drained for fountains.
Fields over-grazed,
the orchestra fades.
Charlotte Poetry Review

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