Monthly Archives: May 2007

Monday’s Verse 5-28-07

Readers,

sorry for last week’s omission; I was too busy consuming intoxicants
to really think about poetry, or operate a computer for that matter.

I’ve arrived. I’ll be in South Africa all summer, and hopefully keep
to our weekly schedule. This poem, which I’m posting from the
Johannesburg airport, should explain my plans in all relevant detail.

TRAVEL PLANS

The pepper tree spilled round us from its source,
and took a lumpish this-way, that-way course,
while dangling hopeful sprays of cinnabar.
You couldn’t rest against the grizzled trunk;
its bulby hump and craggy, knurled scar
forced you to lean your weight on me instead.
The two of us were just a little drunk,
and sipped the sun-warmed wine to make us bold.
“I’d like to go to Mexico,” you said,
“with you, someday, before were too damn old,”
while in the sky an airplane’s vapor trail
politely licked its seal across the sun.
We saw the spreading, tantalizing tail,
and watched it matter-of-factly come undone.

-Leslie Monsour

MV May 14, 2007

Yep, I took the way-back machine and found some old gems.

All, 
 
this one is for all those out there with one last major scary hurdle 
to jump… on their various ways to great things. -ed. 
 
 
 
FOR MY YOUNG FRIENDS WHO ARE AFRAID 
 
There is a country to cross you will 
find in the corner of your eye, in 
the quick slip of your foot—air far 
down, a snap that might have caught. 
And maybe for you, for me, a high, passing 
voice that finds its way by being 
afraid. That country is there, for us, 
carried as it is crossed. What you fear 
will not go away: it will take you into 
yourself and bless you and keep you. 
That’s the world, and we all live there. 
 
—William Stafford 

Monday’s Verse 5-14-07

All,

this one is for all those out there with one last major scary hurdle
to jump… on their various ways to great things. -ed.

FOR MY YOUNG FRIENDS WHO ARE AFRAID

There is a country to cross you will
find in the corner of your eye, in
the quick slip of your foot—air far
down, a snap that might have caught.
And maybe for you, for me, a high, passing
voice that finds its way by being
afraid. That country is there, for us,
carried as it is crossed. What you fear
will not go away: it will take you into
yourself and bless you and keep you.
That’s the world, and we all live there.

—William Stafford