Moonlight on the Yare by John Crome (c. 1816/1817)
Courtesy of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
There were fewer submissions than usual this month, perhaps because so many people were busy with holiday preparations and celebrations. Nevertheless, there were several very interesting poems from which to choose. A different judge might have made a different selection, but this is the poem I judged best. I like the way it builds from the sentence fragment at the beginning to the optimistic conclusion. I hope you like it also.
That longed for presence and peace:
always already here. Apparent
in the way that moon sends tendrils
of light through reverent branches
and opens the beaks of nightingales
to sing their devotions. It doesn’t
require silence or an absence
of thought. In the midst of chaos,
fury of cyclone or cacophony of conflict–
just beneath those turbulent waves
and eddies, lies a vast ocean of calm
fed by streams of kindness. Unnoticed,
its underlying love seems unmanifest.
Yet even the slightest turn of the mind
in any moment reveals it.
~ Carol Alena Aronoff
Bio: Carol Alena Aronoff, Ph.D. is a psychologist, teacher and poet. Her work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and has won several prizes. She was twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She has published a chapbook (Cornsilk) and 4 books of her poems and photographs: The Nature of Music, Cornsilk, Her Soup Made the Moon Weep, Blessings From an Unseen World as well as Dreaming Earth’s Body (with artist Betsie Miller-Kusz). Currently, she resides in rural Hawaii.
Aronoff retains copyright on her poem.
Look for more prompts in 2019.
I wish you all peace for the new year.
© Wilda Morris