A Tranquil Beauty
Crystalline shards on a silken web,
but no spider.
Flowing maple from a newly tapped vein,
but no one to gather its bounty.
The pond is solid, now,
the fields bent over from iced tops.
Everything is silent.
Tranquil beauty can never be denied.
Never alone, but cascading in waves,
the flock moves in a serpentine formation.
Entire trees disappear under midnight blue hues,
the din an immeasurable cacophony of sound.
Miles of power lines completely staffed,
by avian squatters resting en masse.
When startled, the feathers blot out the sun,
like Persian arrows launched at Spartan foes.
A Lone Star staple in both song and verse,
yet never alone in flight or at rest.
Such is the Texas Grackle.
The Desert Glass
Across the white sands I strode,
weary, but needing the time alone.
The heat of Alamogordo was caustic;
my water diffused from mouth to pore.
I saw a shimmer in the sand,
like so many mirages I mistook for reality.
A translucent stone, or perhaps glass,
lay in the sands at my feet.
How very different from the other rock,
like nothing I had seen in nature.
I walked around, and began to find more,
all of greenish hue and opaque luster.
The largest of these was near some stones,
but as I dusted them, it became clear.
The rock was bone of ivory pale,
and the glass was Trinitite.
I stood on the grounds of a nuclear grave
where soldiers stood against the first bomb.
All that remained was this "natural" glass.
The distorted mirror of a national past.
Christopher S. Knodel is an author, poet and ultra-distance runner in San Antonio, TX. He is a freelance journalist and writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column. His poetry and short fiction have been featured in The Asses of Parnassus, Ealain (MPA Publishing), The Wolfian, The Write Place at the Write Time, The Zodiac Review and Zombie Logic Review. He can be easily spotted by his kilt, tattoos and six inch, flaming-red, Van Dyke goatee.