Napo 2

A few days ago, B and I had to come out of our social isolation and go on a bit of an adventure to pick up my car. This necessitated a trip through east Texas during this, the time of the 'rona. And it's spring. So goodness, it was absolutely beautiful driving through. We went through the Sabine National Forest and the Big Thicket. And then there was this sense of darkness, of foreboding, of uncertainty, that contrasted the peacefulness and beauty of the landscape. Nothing was open except "essential services." But the wildflowers were in full bloom. And since we're in 2020, there were a bunch of political signs, too. It was a little surreal.

So anyway, that's where my mind was when I wrote this poem. Today's napo prompt was to write about a place and a mood, kind of a New York School sort of way. The prompt instructed me to write as many specifics as I could, especially road signs, names of trees, colors, etc.

The Swamp

Where the slashpines stand up tall,
The sun slants down to crown them,
Bathing this landscape in gold
As the green green green water
Stands still beneath a blanketing of lilies
And green, so much green.

Here, the soil’s always sodden
And rich. It carries the scent of history,
Of humus and mistakes,
Of beauty and always the thick heat
Of an exhale. Here, in the gullies,
On the banks, winecups cluster
With their magenta petals puckered.

A swamp by any name is but a swamp—
But here, she dresses in her finest colors—
Green goes with anything, it seems,
And peace, and endlessness,
Hide between these tall trunks,
Underneath the darkness of her canopy.

And stuck into the fertile loam of her,
A sign in stark red and blue,
The white already stained
With the mud of this place:

Drain the Swamp.