Fireflies swarmed the shrubbery near my grandmother’s doorstep.
Fireflies – lightning bugs – by the time I was seven-years old,
I loved their descriptive names.
They seemed like miraculous events rather than insects.
They knew how to work a crowd.
Their brightly dotted tails sparkled with bursts of light.
As if they were pantomimic dancing – a graceful motion known only to them,
fireflies helped to shut down the day with their antics.
And they knew they could close tightly the evening with their mystery.
One of those Kansas nights forever beams back to my memory.
A storm betrayed tranquility.
The weather forecast included a steamy soaking.
Night’s pewter clouds began to seal away moonlight.
An uneasiness – a restlessness, was setting in.
Farm folks are aware of the fine line of fate.
One gentle rain shower is a healthy dousing.
And the other rain was a storm pounding stalks of green grain buds.
Wheat stalk, hulls – the gold of bread, would be embedded in soggy soil.
Midsummer night storms are often accompanied by destruction.
Once planted, what is to become of wheat fields?
They rely on both earth’s nutrients, and weather.
The kernels invite moisture, but not downpours.
On this night the sky’s face glared with ugliness.
No harvest is a chronicler of its own fortune.
Thankfully, this was a cooperating storm.
It flushed the vast sky of moisture, then waters turned to mist.
Thunder’s shriek drifted away into the night.
Worrying about the few lightning bugs my cousin had captured,
I hoped they had been spared, and found their way home.
Released from a Mason jar prison, they’d flown away quickly.
Their brief time as a faint lantern ended.
Their glow was too dim to usher a path for me to follow.
Perhaps they were beacons for my dreams.
When those dreams brought morning’s sunrise,
I woke with optimism.
The day of sweltering sun
dried remnants of last evening’s drenching.
So quickly through the day the landscape baked.
In the shade, I leaned against the oak tree’s bark.
Imprints were indenting my back with decoration.
Dried grasses crinkled and crumpled under my bare feet.
My mind shifted back and forth
from my library books to dripping Popsicles.
Would my life hold up against the world’s stormy agenda?
I’d never wanted the flash and cash of fame and fortune.
My dreams were not complicated, nor intricate.
I’d dreamed of the whispers of a thousand fireflies.
What would become of me when I grew up?
I vowed never to blink at earth’s loveliness.
I promised never to ignore kindness and love.
My Kansas dreams were never grandiose.
I wanted my own release from a Mason jar.
For I needed to light a moment of night.
I wanted nothing more than to place words together.
I needed only to write my heart’s language.
COPYRIGHT: Kieran York
Please check out my love poetry in the best-selling poetry collection, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Roses Read, Volume 3; and Wet Violets, Volume 2. Edited by Beth Mitchum. These books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.
If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile, the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the Romance category, by Kieran York. A new books is scheduled for release in the summer of 2013, title Careful Flowers. Books are available through www.bluefeatherbooks.com. Or order through Bella Books Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.