A Poem for Barbara


The settling fog, a ghostly brute that falls
Asleep for winter, slumped athwart the land,
Deludes perspective. Shade and light demand
A reckoning. In whites and greys, the hills
Are fused to valleys, acre, plat and yard.
A distant darkened mass where fog and rain
Condense becomes a barn in lonely guard
Collapsing on its rotten hoard of grain.

The foot that picks among the fallen brick,
Foundation’s ruined empire, counts and spells
The tired gloom wherein the future dwells.
In gravity, rain falls like logic’s laws
And touches lightly as the fog withdraws
And spiders spin a deeper rhetoric.



  1. Quin Finnegan says

    Nice. My favorite lines here are about the waterlogged barn, “in lonely guard / Collapsing on its rotten hoard of grain.”

  2. Quin Finnegan says

    But that picture is frightening. Most spiders I’ve seen are after other insects: flies, caterpillars, that sort of thing. This fellow looks like he’s after a cow.

  3. Rufus McCain says

    Lovely. The foot picking at the ruined brick foundation rang true to me, but I wonder, after reading Quin’s comment above, if it might be worth considering replacing “foot” with “hoof” — making the human absence ghostly to the bovine presence.

    • Rufus McCain says

      On the other hand (or foot) maybe that foot belongs to Barbara in which case hoof won’t do will it.

  4. Quin Finnegan says

    I’d like to see him try to take on a honey badger, though. I bet he’d get his spider ass kicked. But hard.

  5. Nice work Joe.

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