Poetic License

photo of bare trees along the snowy dunes of Lake Michigan
A Calendar of Sonnets: February

Still lie the sheltering snows, undimmed and white;
And reigns the winter’s pregnant silence still;
No sign of spring, save the catkins fill,
And willow stems grow daily red and bright.
These are days when ancients held a rite
Of expiation for the old year’s ill,
And prayer to purify the new year’s will.
----Helen Hunt Jackson

photo of red leaves hanging on a tree in winter

Winter Garden

Winter garden,
the moon thinned to a thread,
Insects singing.
----Matsuo Basho

photo of moonrise with cloud across the face of the moon

February Twilight

I stood beside a hill
Smooth with new-laid snow,
A single star looked out
From the cold evening glow.

There was no other creature
That saw what I could see-
I stood and watched the evening star
As long as it watched me.
----Sara Teasdale

photo of budding trees in March reflected in Wade's Bayou, Douglas, Michigan

The First of March

The sun is brilliant in the sky but its warmth does not reach my face,
The breeze stirs the trees but leaves my hair unmoved.
The cooling rain will feed the grass but will not slake my thirst.
It is all inches away but further from me than my dreams.
----M. Romeo LaFlamme

photo of brown marsh grass in winter - Douglas, Michigan

March bustles in on windy feet
And sweeps my doorstep and my street.
She washes and cleans with pounding rains,
Scrubbing the earth of winter stains.
She shakes the grime from carpet green
Till naught but fresh new blades are seen.
Then, house in order, all neat as a pin,
She ushers gentle springtime in.
----Susan Reiner

photo of brown marsh grass in winter - Saugatuck, Michigan

The End of March

It was cold and windy, scarcely the day
to take a walk on that long beach
Everything was withdrawn as far as possible,
indrawn; the tide far out, the ocean shrunken,
seabirds in ones and twos.
The rackety, icy, offshore wind
Numbed our faces on one side;
disrupted the formation
of a lone flight of Canada geese;
and blew back the low inaudible rollers
in upright, steely mist.
----Elizabeth Bishop

photo of daffodils and bluebells in spring
That come before the swallow dares, and take
The winds of March with beauty.
----William Shakespeare

February '11 - March '11