I don’t buy every book I want to read. In fact, I don’t buy many things on a whim. But when Wiseblood Books announced the publication of its first book of poetry, I almost bought it instantly. I held back a month or so, and then, when I needed ten or so more dollars to reach Amazon’s $35 free shipping, I slipped Cave Art by Charles Hughes into my cart. When it arrived (it was a Wednesday, around 11:00 am) I put it prominently on the table (I had to make dinner yet). I don’t remember exactly what the children were doing, but I somehow finished the book before supper of that day. I announced this fact to the children excitedly. My six-year-old begged me to read him some of it. I read him the poem about the poisoned raccoon. But this following poem is one of my favorites. An insider look into a marriage that has weathered the seasons. I’m happy for Mr. and Mrs. Hughes.
Hostas die back, don’t simply die. The first
Hard frost, I rake their raggedy leaves gone pale
And crooked, though the fall’s been wet. You call me
To come indoors for lunch in your young voice–
A memory partly, partly a wish rehearsed
For years, for our long love. I’d sing you summer
And warm June rain, but we both know the yard’s
Deciduous lei of limes, green-golds, blue-greens,
The roots now burning with a perennial thirst.
Find out more about Cave Art and Charles Hughes here.