Five Poems

Magical Balaclava

I’d worn my balaclava when I took
a walk this morning.  It was zero— cold!
No doubt folks thought I was some kind of schnook . . . .
Surprising warmth, though, started to enfold 
my windpipe as my body’s heat cajoled
the arctic air to drop gelidity—
as frost-pearls knit of breath’s humidity.


The Peach

(Visiting a friend in “Peach Country,”
Rockingham, North Carolina.)

For T.T., who spoke the truth without
exaggeration.  Thanks for the invitation.

Your peach tree limbs are laden near to breaking
with fruit, and in the breeze we’re swept by scent
of what the sun has quietly been making—
inviting us to eat ’til we’re content.

I gently grasp the fuzz, not yet the fruit—
when it drops in my palm with all its weight.
Turning it over, truly, it’s a beaut.
I stroke its blushing face and salivate.

(Looks nothing like the choke-down deeply bruised
gas-ripened radiated peach in stores.
My wallet and my palate, long abused,
gave up that store-bought fruit not fit for boars . . . .)

One bite of this squirts juice up in my eyes
and down my chin.  You laugh, and rhapsodize.


Consciousness, in Passing….

René Descartes’ “I think, therefore I am”
appeared self-evident until Jean-Paul
Sartre observed it was a subtle sham:
“The consciousness ‘I am’ is not at all
the one that quips ‘I think.’” Still, thoughts enthrall
most egos ’til approaching our own deaths—
feeling ‘I am’ with just our last few breaths.


Against All Ohms

For E.K.J., an electrical engineer’s
engineer, on his 47th birthday.

The joy we dads take in our kids
as they grow up is hard to show
among conflicting egos, ids,
and superegos in the flow.
Few things are what they seem to be,
and fewer turn out as we’d think.
The teenage personality
hangs up a sign: ‘Back Off, Please, Inc’.

Since we’d not quicken splinters’ smarts—
perplexed, more puzzled as we watch—
we do back off with aching hearts
as they let belts out, notch by notch . . . .

As each new step becomes a stride
we are electrified with pride.


Connundrum of Movement

(After Zecharia Stitchin’s Earth Chronicles.)

How take The Unmoved Mover, moved to make
the Anunnaki—and the likes of us?
What moved this?  Love?  Too utterly opaque!
The Unmoved Mover moved?  Ridiculous!
It won’t save us to read Leviticus.
Yet human eyes turned outward may, when ashen
at what they see, be moved to feel compassion.

About Leland Jamieson

Leland Jamieson’s two collections of poetry — 21ST CENTURY BREAD (2007), and IN VITRO: NEW SHORT RHYMING POEMS POST-9/11 (2009), plus a guide for high school teachers and self-taught poets, MAKING ‘METAPHOR’ POEMS (2009)—can be found, with texts and videos, at