On Navajo Bridge

Two California Condor on the ledge

young ones with faces to the cliff

it was a cold night

after warming up they will fly

if you hear the wings pound

watch them soar

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Saw these condor when walking the Navajo Bridge

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On Navajo Bridge

How to Bury a Warrior

Protected

this stronghold only one entrance

Chochise guarded his people

against the enemy

Creek running through

dried venison plants cactus flour

fit for survival and escape

over the ridge into the mountains

US military made peace

gave Chochise his stronghold

as a reservation and let him be

to live out his days

Chochise died and buried there

wrapped in a red blanket

vermillon design on his face

he rode for the last time

Up the ragged wall of the hold

on his horse while being held up

by his beloved followers

to a place high on the ridge

Procession of his final journey

horse and dog and rifles

all dropped deep into a gorge

Chochise’s great warrior burial

Father leader friend peacemaker

lowered into that same gorge

buried into the heart chasm

of his homeland

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NaPoWriMo prompt – how to poem

Chochise Stronghold is in the state of Arizona

How to Bury a Warrior

Coffee Ghazal

Struggle to find a word worth repeating   coffee

Drink it from my favorite cup   coffee

 

It was once an undiscovered bean

Finds honor now in our daily routine   coffee

 

Explorer John Smith after drinking with Turks

Drank in the captain’s galley  from a demi cup   coffee

 

When the Europeans brought it to US

Some said yuk give me tea not   coffee

 

Others celebrated and wanted the brew

Roasted bean over a hot skillet fire   coffee

 

People sought out the beverage

with spices liqueurs and assemblage   coffee

 

Boston’s The Green Dragon served it too

out of that house a revolution brewed   coffee

 

Look at what 400 years can do

Wordshophop ghazal is through   coffee

 

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NaPoWriMo prompt – write a ghazal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coffee Ghazal

The Family Portrait

 

The old frame that holds the family portrait is removed,

separating it from this photograph of another time, another place.

The place is Red Rocks National Park in Colorado.    The family sits

blended into rock landscape for that single instance of togetherness

that we can never repeat.  I search for a smile, or a half frown on any

of the faces.  I,  a new mother,  in full smile, hold my first born Anna

with my hand held firmly over her heart.  Two blonde sisters’ dimpled

smiles are framed by a huge red boulder.  The men are outnumbered.

My father,  last to bare his name,  is big and on the edge,  like in life.

His mother stands close to him and between dad and mom, symbolic

of many a rocky marriage.       All three, mother  father  grandmother,

are dressed in beige and seem to fade into the earth’s bright colors.

Now they are gone.  The husbands are bearded and beautiful.

The children sit, knowing and vague.

 

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Family portrait taken in the winter of 1980, poem written in 1989 and

revised for the NaPoWriMo prompt of 2016.

 

 

The Family Portrait