Saturday, April 20, 2013

A Poem by Bill Jansen

When yellow leaves

It was that sort of serene Fall day
when you expect to encounter Vivaldi
in yellow leaves under widely spread buckeye trees
exercising his faithful dog, Giuseppe.

A youthful, alert companion retrieving a violin bow
over and over with insatiable animal happiness.

Ruefully, I remark to myself that I have no pet,
unless you count a litter of peeves.
Which denotes me, I suppose, as a trivial misanthrope
in a world of tortured confessions signed with a smiley face.

But what a cozy, gee whiz, blue sky above us today,
under which to walk aimlessly through yellow leaves.

Or pause at a cello somber pond,
a wide ditch really, brimming with paling lives.
A pair of birds, of a type I don't recognize,
sheltering on the opposite verge.

Below, there is perhaps an aquarium Pub,
a literal watering hole, which I should try.

Why not go there now, sit at a corner table,
sip a pint of fermented air,
and observe quietly a game of snooker
being played by retired carp or tipsy bluegill.

Perhaps then I can finally make a good beginning
on a poem about you, a brief stanza or two,
reconciling somehow the absurd difference in our ages,
and why your beauty should not matter to me.

Refined shadows will fall across the page
I am writing on, like dense musical notations
cast by insects striding on the wavering ceiling above me.

A darting waitress might turn on a remastered aria
performed by Caruso in his prime.

I'll try to think of a nice, tight, gee whiz ending.

But for now another flurry of yellow leaves
has reminded me that somewhere Winter's soloist
is unlimbering an icy, darker bow.

Bill Jansen lives in Forest Grove, Oregon. His works has appeared in various ezines and journals, including Cirque, Trigger Fish Review, and The Centrifugal Eye.


  1. Bill, I really like this age difference your beauty should not matter to me
    This the of the poem to me. You should send you work to Camel Saloon if you wish he has great joint as well as this site.
    Best Tom

  2. thanks tom...ah a great joint...too bad can't even afford a pack of Camels....will send....bill

  3. awesome images..the last stanza is just wonderful. F

  4. thanks fondant...tempted to go in a long rant about how i suffered for 8 years to write that last stanza but...bill