Nancy: When "color" is defined as white and black and shades of gray, a cleft in the rock sheltering a streak of moss is astonishing in its brilliance.
On A White Day
With a brush and black ink
I might sketch the stepped ledge,
the frozen bay, even the spruce
that takes all the light into its dark hunger,
but could I ever risk that slash
of moss, the broken lip of rock
green green greenest green?
Alan: Sometimes poems write themselves in reaction. This one did, to the lines quoted.
“two flapping, hoarse malevolent shapes – ravens for sure –”
Crow wakes me, early.
Raven soars, stately, mocking the eagle.
Jay mimics the hawk, crashes invisible gates in the trees.
Raven inspects my work-in-progress, spring and fall.
Crow guards me, warning of owls.
Jay chides me for keeping cats; jay chivvies the dog.
Raven sings to me, secretly,
singing the Dharma
in the season when everyone sleeps.