Friday, March 22, 2013

Happy Birthday, Billy Collins!

From one of my collages. 
 
I guarantee the following poem will leave mice and matches in your head for days.  It does what a great poem should do:  mess with your head.  :-)   Here in the swamp everything is powder-yellow from the Pine pollen.  No real rain for weeks, so yellow abounds.  (It rained a tiny bit last week and left abstract yellow paintings on the concrete where the rain had washed down some of the pollen...)  My house, yard, truck, driveway, cats are all yellow.  When I walk to the mailbox, I can taste the grit of the Pine pollen.  I'm hoping today wil bring us some much-needed rain.
 
Today is also the birthday of one of my favorite authors, Louis L'Amour.  Speaking of reading, (wasn't I?) I talked to my 9 year old granddaughter yesterday for over an hour about books.  I gave her a little Kindle for Christmas with a cute pink cover.  She wears it around her arm like diamonds and never puts it down.  I gave her a gift card for her birthday on Christmas Eve to buy books and I also taught her how to download the free classics like "Little Women".  She's into the Percy Jackson series now so we had to discuss mythology and plot.  I read the books along with her so we could discuss them and I really enjoyed the stories.  Luckily, my grandson had the series and loaned them to me.  Then she related how she has to get back to the 5th Harry Potter book because her best friend is ahead of her.  She told me she's out of money to buy books, so I sent her a new gift card.  A girl must always have book money!  I'd sell all of my favorite shoes to make sure she has book money.  One must have priorities.  And what are grammy's for anyhoo?? 
 
On that note, I have to go read.  I have two new books by one of my favorite poet-bloggers, Fireblossom.
 
They both look nice and juicy:

 
 
 
Happy Spring, Happy Reading, and have a wonderful weekend. 
 
xo, Marion
 
 
THE COUNTRY
By Billy Collins
 
I wondered about you
when you told me never to leave
a box of wooden, strike-anywhere matches
lying around the house because the mice

might get into them and start a fire.
But your face was absolutely straight
when you twisted the lid down on the round tin
where the matches, you said, are always stowed.

Who could sleep that night?
Who could whisk away the thought
of the one unlikely mouse
padding along a cold water pipe

behind the floral wallpaper
gripping a single wooden match
between the needles of his teeth?
Who could not see him rounding a corner,

the blue tip scratching against a rough-hewn beam,

the sudden flare, and the creature
for one bright, shining moment
suddenly thrust ahead of his time—

now a fire-starter, now a torchbearer
in a forgotten ritual, little brown druid
illuminating some ancient night.
Who could fail to notice,

lit up in the blazing insulation,
the tiny looks of wonderment on the faces
of his fellow mice, onetime inhabitants
of what once was your house in the country?


"The Country" by Billy Collins, from Nine Horses: Poems. © Random House, 2003

7 comments:

Unlocked said...

Ahhhh, a beautiful poem. Love the collage you did!

Love you!

Marion said...

Isn't Billy Collins just great? I have all of his books and love them all equally. Love you right back. xoxo

Kelly said...

I love hearing about you and MM. I can't believe how grown up she sounds now.

quid said...

What a nice, newsy post, accompanied by a great poem!

Glad you're raising another generation of bookworms.....

quid

Marion said...

Kelly, I know. I can't believe she's 9 years old. Seems like yesterday she was just born. xo

Quid, the joy of my life is my 3 grandones who are all bookworms. My work here is done. LOL! xo

erin said...

heh. ya, i'm an ass. billy collins is incredible.

xo
erin

Fireblossom said...

Heyyy! Thanks so much for the shout out!

You're a "top reviewer"? As that noted chick singer once said, "I can't wait!"