Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal

You, Poet

for Billy Collins

John M. Valentine

Here, near some blue hydrangeas,
reading you,
I feel no rancor
that your window is filled
with sun
or that these candles
tremble in the wind--
only gratitude
that a hand is strong enough
to praise the rain
glistening in the grass,
that a wren's eyes
never miss the light,
the way they catch it
scattering in the trees,
everything still,
wind holding its breath
in the branches,
and the sudden stir,
the rush of air,
the bright bird now
quivering a limb in beauty.


John M. Valentine is a professor of philosophy at the Savannah College of Art and Design. His poetry has been published in The Sewanee Review, The Southern Poetry Review, The Midwest Quarterly, Snake Nation Review, The Adirondack Review, and others.

© John M. Valentine

Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal ISSN 1554-8449, Copyright © 2004-2012