Guest poem submitted by Steve Chernicoff:
(Poem #1885) Boy at the Window
Seeing the snowman standing all alone In dusk and cold is more than he can bear. The small boy weeps to hear the wind prepare A night of gnashings and enormous moan. His tearful sight can hardly reach to where The pale-faced figure with bitumen eyes Returns him such a god-forsaken stare As outcast Adam gave to Paradise. The man of snow is, nonetheless, content, Having no wish to go inside and die. Still, he is moved to see the youngster cry. Though frozen water is his element, He melts enough to drop from one soft eye A trickle of the purest rain, a tear For the child at the bright pane surrounded by Such warmth, such light, such love, and so much fear.
Apropos of Martin's submission of "A Barred Owl" (Minstrels Poem #1849), here's another by Richard Wilbur that I like. It deals with the same themes Martin mentioned in his comments on the other poem, the "domestication" of a child's fear and the "stark sense of the violence that lurks in the mundane." Wilbur's image of the mutual pity between boy and snowman is quite moving. One thing I particularly like about Wilbur is his formal discipline. In an age when most poets can't be bothered with such niceties as rhyme and meter, Wilbur's poems are as rigorously and precisely structured as anything from a Milton, Keats, or Tennyson. An exemplary illustration of Robert Frost's definition of freedom as "moving easy in harness." --Steve