Back to my land of verdant green
To feel the bite of winter chill
To know that while all this is so
That far off land enthralls me still.
That far off land of granite peaks
Of crystalline white massif high,
Of conifer which scale the *****
Of rocky outcrop to the sky.
The baking heat of desert mesa
Spread as far as eye can see
Sage bush in its fragrant aura
Tumble **** soon rolling free.
Squirrel dart on shale cascade
Of green grey slate on alpine flank
Bright blue birds in curious hover
...For this, my reeling senses thank.
Fishing boats in bright array
Adorn the West coast sheltered lee,
Crab and mackerel brim the bin
Of bearded fishermen with glee.
Pounding surf of North Pacific
Carves the rock of bastioned coast
Embryonic currents cold
Do modify the climate most.
Redwoods huge clad coastal ranges,
Bright geraniums do sing
From earthen pots outside the cafe
Hot coffee fragrant from within.
Hilarity as laughing people gather
Watch as yelling Serbs do sling
Huge silver fish across the stall
Amid Seattle's Pike's Place din.
Colour paints this market place
Flowers stacked in every hue
Noisy vendors bawl their product
Creamy ice cream cone for you.
Streaming dust in streaming hair
Scree slopes avalanche past for thrill
Mountain crevasse yawns aloof
As ATV's roar up the hill.
Wild terrain of wilderness
On mountaintop of forest fir,
Cougar, grizzly bear and wolf
In pack are found herein astir.
Atop the very precipice
We view the everlasting peaks
Magnificent in summer sun
Embalmed in snow when Winter speaks.
Freeways snake from coast to mountain
Clover leaf in junctions pile,
Forty ton trucks pull big trailers
Endless day for endless mile.
Barrel straight these concrete tarmacs
Stretching far as eye can see,
Headlong surge huge pickup trucks
But cautious eye for Sheriff be.
Roadside diners loud and raucous
Selling burgers, selling beer
Neon flashing through the night
Old ***** waitress' toothless cheer.
The years have clad our friendships well
Familiarity's warming hand
Allows resumption of our words
Despite the 40 year gap spanned.
Houseboat floats in crowded wharfage
Swimming through a clear cool lake,
Californian wine with friends
Hot chilli food and fresh bread bake.
Eye fillets grill on barbecue
See the distant mountain peaks
Summer snow endures aloft
Glows indigo as sunset speaks.
Endless skies of cobalt blue
Cloudless in the summer sun
Gracious denizens do offer
Graciousness across the land
Across these people so diverse,
The wondrous gift of ready smile
Friendly hand and open purse.
History tells these people spoke
Electing leaders for their time
When sanity's quiet need arose
It was promulgated on the line.
With Washington and Lincoln
Through FDR to JFK,
The Presidents who bed-rocked
This Foundation for the nation's day.
Astounding, that exceptional men
Have carved this face from stone,
Have caste the global presence
That Americans call home.
I understand the feeling now,
Of pride and patriotic stance.
I understand the inner strength
Of America's great, true romance.
This poem bequeathed to our good friends who inhabit this land... Big Rich, Suzie and Mike, Our mate Stevo and Ian, Heidi, Wyatt and Cooper, Dear old Greg and his elegant lady, Holly.
But most of all, with gratitude and love, to our marvelous son Boaz and his lovely lady, Angela.
Marshalg & Janet
At "Foxglove", Taranaki... In the Southern hemisphere's mid winter.
2 August 2013