Monday, March 14, 2011

Memento Vivere

[in loving memory to my mother, Mary Adalyn Young-Douglas (1927-1993) and
to Sara Teasdale (1894-1933), with abiding respect]

pink marigold suns have slipped away

like the cameo cares of Sara Teasdale
but I am here

with the dove-lapsed valentine

folded up I always meant to
send her, across time-

and the air of St. Louis

crumples like rose parchment
kindling lost kingdomes:

are you there?

as I hold out one cream starched

dawn's particular corner
for you to catch- dim orchards washed-

green rains...

forget-me-nots at tea

I'm dreaming a cloud

like an envelope. sepia-dipped
twice over. filled
with your manifold

weeping harps your sunbursts

but it's delayed, misplaced,

and where

will I really be that

ringed with light again
sustaining when I can
the fleeting imprint of so many violet skies...

here at the orphaned window still

I trace your leaves and lilies through the mist
in tinctured starlight
scrapbook cherished

weighing in scales of pearl the clock face moon
but the afternoon grows older, after all

the tide of wishes turns...

above the noise of mere battlefields
every singed and salvaged word

I praise

and look past
the garnet consolations of the epic dead
to see

white wave on wave

of your delight
bright words

never blind, inlaid

like fires in opal

the rainbowed startled reveries (of God)


and on - at last-

the unclasped fairytale page unwavering
the heart stenciled postscript of the child

who cried for Beauty

and was heard-

mary angela douglas 13-14 march 2011

*"Latin, remember to live"

Sara Teasdale poet of starlight forgotten later in life was born in St. Louis where I also went to school. My mother loved her poetry as well.