Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Gary Margolis: Ending the War

Approaching summer, 
my wife wants to call a truce
between her and the pine 
 
cones. Between her
and the battalion 
of weeds.
 
If you know Wendy,
I don’t have to
tell you, she’s not easily
 
discouraged.
One summer she rose
every day
 
before dawn and stood
with her arms
outstretched, catching
 
as many of them 
as she could.
The ones she missed
 
she raked, until
her rake lost
its teeth.
 
As far as the weeds went,
some of them were afraid
to rise. Having heard
 
how determined
she is with her hands.
How she loves feeling
 
her knees in the dirt.
At this point in our lives
it’s not unusual
 
for one of us to ask
what we’ve been thinking
of God.  
 
You mean the earth 
under my nails
she’s said more than once.
 
No, I mean the war
inside the mind, 
where God lives. 
 
And Frost, who wrote
“Today shall be the day
of what we both said”.
 
Trying to end 
the argument 
between him and his wife,
 
as to which way
West Running Brook
runs. A truce
 
for the marrying kind
he might say. 
I would like to offer
 
to Wendy. 
So, one morning
in August, she can walk 
 
away from her fury
of pines, and catch
her breath. Can look over
 
to me, standing 
under the shield
of the maple tree.  

Copyright 2020 Gary Margolis

Gary Margolis is a poet, teacher, and psychologist who lives in Vermont. His fifth collection Museum of Islands: New and Selected Poems was published by Bauhan Publishing.

3 comments on “Gary Margolis: Ending the War

  1. loranneke
    August 29, 2020

    I second Barbara Huntington!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Huntington
    August 29, 2020

    I love hearing the beauty of people growing old together. Or maybe I’m adding something of my own needs to a poem? But then, maybe that is why I love poetry.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Arlene Weiner
    August 29, 2020

    I pick up dozens of cones every couple of days. After yesterday’s thunderstorms I think it was a hundred at least. They don’t compost well–we’ve tried.

    Liked by 1 person

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