Vox Populi

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Barbara Crooker: Sustenance

The sky hangs up its starry pictures: a swan,

a crab, a horse. And even though you’re

three hundred miles away, I know you see

them, too. Right now, my side

of the bed is empty, a clear blue lake

of flannel. The distance yawns and stretches.

It’s hard to remember we swim in an ocean

of great love, so easy to fall into bickering

like little birds at the feeder fighting over proso

and millet, unaware of how large the bag of grain is,

a river of golden seeds, that the harvest was plentiful,

the corn is in the barn, and whenever we’re hungry,

a dipperful of just what we need will be spilled . . .

Copyright 2014 Barbara Crooker. From Small Rain (Purple Flag Press, 2014).

Barbara Crooker’s many collections of poetry include Some Glad Morning (Pitt, 2019). She lives in Pennsylvania.

Northern Cardinal, Chipping Sparrow, and White-breasted Nuthatch. Photo by Brian Maltzan via Birdshare.

11 comments on “Barbara Crooker: Sustenance

  1. Lisa Zimmerman
    November 22, 2022

    Simply lovely ❤️


  2. matthewjayparker
    November 13, 2022

    My wife and I have been in an LDR relationship for 15 years. This poem is lovely. I’ll translate it into Spanish and send it to her.


    • Vox Populi
      November 14, 2022

      What a beautiful thing to say, Matthew. Thank you! I’ll make that Barbara Crooker, the poet, reads this note.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Loranneke
    November 13, 2022

    An appeasing and quietly loving poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vox Populi
      November 13, 2022

      Yes, I love Barbara Crooker’s poems for their quiet wisdom and elegant understated presentation.



  4. Barbara Huntington
    November 13, 2022

    And today I wake and my 300 miles is forever. Ache, fear of emptiness
    I rise with my newly shaved head and try on a new going forward


    • Vox Populi
      November 13, 2022

      A beautiful couplet, Barbara. Keep sending your comments, and get well soon!


      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sean Sexton
    November 13, 2022

    So sweet and truthful a poem was never more gladly received than this day’s.

    Liked by 1 person

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