The Wind No Longer Whispers by Carol A. Stephen (THOUGHTS ABOUT THE EARTH Series)

Always pleased to have a poem up at Silver Birch Press.

Silver Birch Press

the-beautiful-morning-1982The Wind No Longer Whispers
After William Stafford

by Carol A. Stephen

The long howl of an ancient wolf envelops sound,
as its final exhale sends a chill rebounding from the moon.

Every bird goes silent,
every church bell, every choir.
Each newborn baby, born mouth open
in a silent mourn.

Rivers run voiceless over rocks, no longer
chortle along their etched route among the stones
of the ages. New hatchlings, mouthing a call for food,
shatter no silences. The wind no longer whispers
among shivering leaves. The world, without its voice,
sheds tears. No one hears a sound.

The earth begins to tremble, summoning the grass.
She prays to the sky to send its morning moisture,
to bathe her flowers once more in gentle rain.
The clouds, gathered above, begin softly to weep.

Below, there is a stirring. Below, at last, all
the voiceless things begin to sing in…

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I Am Still Waiting for Green Mornings by Carol A. Stephen (I AM STILL WAITING Series)

I participated in the original I Am Waiting series with a poem titled Waiting for Greeen Mornings. And since we have all been waiting for an end to lockdowns and the virus, it seemed fitting to acknowledge the original poem but also all the things we have been waiting, and waiting, and waiting to be ours again!

Silver Birch Press

I Am Still Waiting for Green Mornings
by Carol A. Stephen

I woke this morning to snow on the dwarf
spruce, small dustings on its branches, lovely
come December, but it’s April now.

Last summer was too hot for green, while autumn
was a bold blur of red, yellow, orange, until lockdown
washed all colour from the world.

I am still waiting for those green mornings, for unpremeditated
rapture, for Perpetual Wonder, and for animals to fall like rain
in a painted tangle of green in Mikhail Vrubel’s Morning.

But now, everyone runs in place; I run in circles, and we’re all
still waiting for the final “all-clear.” In the garden, lilacs are budding,
robins have returned, and along the Riverwalk, forest babies wait

for their next meal. White-tailed deer forage under the snow.
Herons, otters and mink dive in the river for fish. The ospreys are back
to their…

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How to Write a Poem in 2021 by Carol A. Stephen (HOW TO Series)

My poem appearing on Silver Birch Press on my birthday! What’s better than that! Carol

Silver Birch Press

writing-2005How to Write a Poem in 2021
by Carol A. Stephen

Ten a.m. Sit at your desk, assemble writing tools.
Start computer. Don’t write yet. First,
check fourteen emails and five unrelated subject links.

Time for coffee, tea if you prefer.
Sit at your desk. Play two computer games.
Make it three. Oh, just one more for luck.

Search computer for a prompt. Send an email
telling your friend how you have writer’s block.
Bathroom break. Sit at your desk.

Make a list of words to include in a poem.
Ten words. Strike out five. Add another ten.
Lunch break.

Sit at your desk. Read through other poets’ poems
for inspiration. Gaze out the window, check the weather.
Write a line.

Aha! We’re getting somewhere! But— it’s now 5 p.m.
Spend 15 minutes writing. Sign your poem.
Done for today.

PAINTING: Writing by Zhang Xiaogang (2005).


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Visit to a Small Hospital in the Time of COVID-19 by Carol A. Stephen (PRIME MOVERS Series)

A poem to honour the staff of our local Emergency department, who put themselves at risk on a daily basis during this pandemic. The nurse’s name is not her real name, to protect her privacy. But she is very real, warm, friendly, caring- all the things you might need when you are high-risk and in harm’s way. Thank you to the Carleton Place & District Memorial Hospital, for always being there. Carol A. Stephen

Silver Birch Press

castaldostudio licensedstephen textPhoto by Castaldo Studio, used by permission. 

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I have advanced kidney disease, which also causes anemia. I have to monitor my hemoglobin on a regular basis. Last year, an internal bleed sent me to the hospital for almost two months. When I learned two weeks ago that my hemoglobin had dropped very low again, I immediately thought “Here we go again!” But the idea of going anywhere near a hospital right now was frightening too. Usually, they want a referral at the hospital, but this time, thanks to the wonderful nurse who took my urgent call, I was taken right away.  I spent about eight hours there altogether, but it would have been much longer in normal times. The wait is not usually five minutes; it is usually several hours. I cannot thank the staff at the hospital enough for their care, their professionalism, and for…

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