“Withered Fields”…..a poem from “Pitcher of Moon”

Canadian Geese in Early Winter, janekohut-bartels, watercolor, 2005

Canadian Geese in Early Winter, janekohut-bartels, watercolor, 2005

….to be published this spring some day. “Pitcher of Moon” is a collection of 35 poems over the past several years.

Lady Nyo

Withered Fields

Winter brings withered fields,
Hoar-frost covers stalks of grain,
And leaves a brittle hollow
Leached of color to a pale dun
A shade of nothingness,
Now snapped and dried twigs
Just to be called stubble,

Pale, thin air conspires in this withering
To starve the landscape surrounding,
A drawing of air not enough for life,
Too shallow for lungs, just a whistling down
brittle tubes of grain,
The ghostly sound of pipes,
A frozen Pan of the fields.

The north wind a
Howling scream, sweeping
The land before it
And only those far under ground
Are spared its crippling caress.

This withering of landscape
reflects within.
Age, infirmities, bring the cold inside
Where no amount of warm fire, wool,
Feet propped against a blazing fire
Can stem the ravages of what
Is happening outside
As it swirls under doors and through
Shut and shuttered windows.

Hands grow thin and clawed
Bones reluctant of movement,
Skin dry , itching —
A monk’s hair shirt
A penitence unbidden
But ours for the sin of growing old.

There is little to do
But crawl to the fire,
Wrap ourselves in solitude
And pray these withered fields
Obey the cycle of seasons
And fertility be reclaimed in time.

Jane Kohut-Bartels
Copyrighted 2012

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7 Responses to ““Withered Fields”…..a poem from “Pitcher of Moon””

  1. hypercryptical Says:

    Superbly composed.

    Anna :o]


  2. brian miller Says:

    A penitence unbidden
    But ours for the sin of growing old…have heard the sin of growing old before, i wonder at it as it is something that is natural so how can it be a sin, or how can we avoid committing it, you know…i dunno just a thought that sprang to mind in reading…

    the last 3 lines of the poem carry the heaviest burden for me and pull it off really well…they are my fav lines in the poem…


  3. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Brian! So nice of you to stop by and read and leave a comment.

    Well, perhaps sin is the wrong word, or perhaps you are still too young to understand this part of life…LOL!

    My husband read this poem and thought it was rather a ‘strange, heavy’ poem.

    Thanks, Brian.



  4. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Anna. It’s a strange poem, looking back at it. I must have been very cold that day.

    Thank you for reading and your lovely comment.



  5. aprille Says:

    Not strange at all.
    It sums up all my feelings of the moment.
    Complete with the painful skin and the hopelessness of this endless winter.
    The watercolour is beautiful. Ethereal and oriental almost.


  6. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Aprille! I am so sorry to hear of your pain. Perhaps in time it will vanish? I hope so. This last year from the beginning was a big pain in many places….but we recover and I hope that for you.

    endless winter: you got it. It was so teasingly warm last week, and now in the 30’s here. Right back into winter, though the calendar says spring!

    That watercolor is part of a series I did a few years ago of birds in water. Did a few of them, just to get the reflection!

    Thank you for reading and leaving a comment, Aprille. And I hope for your continued recovery.



  7. Build Lean Muscle Review Says:

    I every time emailed this webpage post page to all my friends, for the reason that if like to read it then my contacts will too.


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