Bio Note: Love my husband, wine, Zooming with my poetry pals, music, cats, poetry, TV, dogs, flowers, photography, tiramisu chocolate pasta Somebody Stop Me! Dislike cleaning and toxic people. I’ve been published in many journals and in over 100 North American anthologies; my digital art and photographs have graced the covers of 9 poetry books and I have a poetry book You Break It You Buy It forthcoming with Guernica Editions in Canada. I’m a member of The Ontario Poetry Society, League of Canadian Poets and an associate member of the Academy of American Poets.
Early Mornings in the Barrios
Playa del Coco, Costa Rica It’s almost dawn and the usual half-miracles begin. Mary Oliver, Morning at Blackwater It begins—trees, prepared for bare-root bursts of song and dance shrug off their soil, sway harmoniously if the wind desires, air-skimming solo artists, small ensembles breeze-bend through rhythms, hot jazz it, or opt for paler blues; or in motionless expectation await the rooster’s territorial lament, earnest calls across roads and fence, rhythmic cackle of cock-a-doodles doing their best, standing their ground, shouting YES WE ARE HERE, drowned out now and then by gringo dogs, their job description over-emphasized in stupid unison. Tiko dogs stretch out anywhere. Slothful head-lifts acknowledge the presence of whomever and whatever. The drama ends there; gated canines’ hysterics replaced by ecstatic squeals and screams of children immersed in soccer silenced by local school bell revving up like an air raid siren. Through it all, cicadas throbbing against the atmosphere resemble thousands of tail-shaking rattlers rather than the wing-rub of insect bodies dying for sex. But there are mornings amid the commotion, the rush of early wake-up, howler monkeys begin a tree-top canon starting with low notes rising, an earnest momentum amplified. Resounding rasps and power notes fill the air for miles, low rolling, then staccato, answered with a slow swell of chorus, bass channels magnified across the vast expanse, they bellow in concert, then fall away; the whole recital a protest against the steady nonsense of dogs and roosters, their racket silenced only by rain.
Originally published in Association of Italian Canadian Writers’ newsletter. 2020
Steve 1983-2012 3:00 pm, but our clock strikes one— to us, it’s our son Steve roaming the house. I slip outside to read on the porch. He glides out too, all gangbusters, but in a ghostly fashion. He talks to me outdoors more than in: sudden visits, message by dragonfly cardinal, lizard or snake. I respond drinking in memories, spitting out regrets. Some days he insists on joy. Some days I’m sure to find a point in time imploding in on itself like the daily death of a star. The years gain on us; sorrow turns sticky then sour, back to sugar, abrasive grains scraping against life itself. In our house, missing him is a gap we can’t fill with glue or grout. Every corner of our yard is a complex life sentence, compounded by pauses, apostrophes suspended on twigs spliced onto heart-shaped trees waving good-bye before undressing. Every day is autumn— yellow and red bathed in blue, the lawn a funeral pyre ablaze. Tears fall like willow leaves. His hand takes mine as when a boy. He steadies me. I drown rather than burst into flame.
Originally published in Vallum digital Issue (2020)
©2022 Lynn Tait
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