Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Who? Me?!

I almost deleted the message on the answering machine as I didn't recognize the caller's name at the beginning of the call. Incredulity followed as someone from the Heritage House Museum in Key West, Florida informed me that my poem, "Pruning", was being awarded 3rd prize in the 2006 Robert Frost Poetry Contest. Please indulge my public exaltation. For this small-town kid, one of seven children and a lackluster student - this is a rather big day.


Pruning is such a delicate matter,
as we choose what must relinquish the right
to remain aloft and cling to the ladder
of the arbor where the squabbling jays natter,
about their perches for the night.

It’s the space you cleave between the branch
and the trellised bark - you know will bleed.
You watch your questioning knuckles blanch
with the hope you’ve measured beyond mere chance
as required by the gardener’s creed
in the dog-eared books which try to say
about the choices a man must make,
as to what must go and what may stay,
to love the light for another day.

The pruner knows his hands’ mistake
will leave the roots beneath his job,
making their peace with the fool in the air,
judging his work while his temples throb,
as he stifles regret with a tight-throated sob,
about the error for the things in his care.

Catherine Wilson



Casey said...

So happy for you -- I posted Robert Frost's "Mowing" to celebrate back on my blog, in the comments section under my Emily Dickinson post.

Way to go! How about posting some of the winning work?

Cathy said...

Casey. That's the loveliest congratulations I'll likely receive. A poem by Robert Frost. "Mowing." I've not read it in a very long time. I hear the whisper and the poet's voice and I thank you.

Bonita said...

I'm happy for you Cathy, and congratulations! And, your photo here really captures that 'ah-ha' moment, when one little image makes quite an impression....just like you.

Cathy said...

Oh,Bonita - Thank you so much. I keep thinking the phone is going to ring and some voice intoning " Ah, Catherine . . . there's been a mistake or - April Fool!"

I just wrote to a friend in Wales: People are coming
to my door with flowers and the phone is ringing.
Forgive me as I wander in a world that is 'me', 'me',
'me' for a little while. This chest full of happy ME
is a little scary - I know that gravity waits
patiently for the little stone that was released by a
spring shower but thinks it's flying :0)

Anvilcloud said...

I think that's marvellous. We all appreciate recognition and validation. Tell us about the photo?

Cathy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
laura said...

I too would love to read the winning poem. Is it posted here and I'm missing it? Congratulations, Cathy! I think you completely deserve to revel in the glory of recognition. We all love it! I hope the glow lives on ...

Cathy said...

Laura, It's so nice to have you stop by :0) I'd love to share the poem with you, but apparently if I were to post it on my website, it becomes less publishable. If you want to share your email address so that I can forward 'Pruning' - mine is mushduck@yahoo.com. Thanks for your interest and the kind words.