A Poem for Tuesday

I found a really cool poem I enjoyed about imagining a garden in winter, but the author seems to be a crazy-crazy person who tracks down this poem when people put it on their blogs and then writes rude things.

Good heavens.  No poem is that good.

I searched for others with February in the title and they were mostly depressing.  Maybe February is the cruelest month.  Maybe that’s why we try to fill it with presidents and Valentines.

Take this poem for example:



The cold grows colder, even as the days
grow longer, February’s mercury vapor light
buffing but not defrosting the bone-white
ground, crusty and treacherous underfoot.
This is the time of year that’s apt to put
a hammerlock on a healthy appetite,
old anxieties back into the night,
insomnia and nightmares into play;
when things in need of doing go undone
and things that can’t be undone come to call,
muttering recriminations at the door,
and buried ambitions rise up through the floor
and pin your wriggling shoulders to the wall;
and hope’s a reptile waiting for the sun.

Source: Poetry (February 2002).

We can’t leave it like that, can we?  Right as he might be.  So I offer a second poem.  In the frigid winter months I tend to favor the Turner Classic Movie channel, so this is for my husband who unwittingly gets sucked into old movies late into the night.  I don’t think he has a crush on Myrna Loy.  He’s never said.

Video Blues


My husband has a crush on Myrna Loy,
and likes to rent her movies, for a treat.
It makes some evenings harder to enjoy.
The list of actresses who might employ
him as their slave is too long to repeat.
(My husband has a crush on Myrna Loy,
Carole Lombard, Paulette Goddard, coy
Jean Arthur with that voice as dry as wheat …)
It makes some evenings harder to enjoy.
Does he confess all this just to annoy
a loyal spouse? I know I can’t compete.
My husband has a crush on Myrna Loy.
And can’t a woman have her dreamboats? Boy,
I wouldn’t say my life is incomplete,
but some evening I could certainly enjoy
two hours with Cary Grant as my own toy.
I guess, though, we were destined not to meet.
My husband has a crush on Myrna Loy,
which makes some evenings harder to enjoy.

Mary Jo  Salter, “Video Blues” from A Kiss in Space. Copyright © 1999 by Mary Jo  Salter.  Used by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

Source: A Kiss in Space (Alfred A. Knopf, 1999)


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