The undulating wheat field lay before him,
stretching her hand to grasp the sunset
beneath an ivory quilt of snow,
like a virgin bride on her wedding bed.
And he longed to groom her, this fertile land
of Old Man Edgar's, whose life's work within
the neatly spaced rows had yielded
a bountiful harvest from her bosom.
Now, as swirling snows fill the well-worn ruts
of his toils past, in favor of pristine canvas
and the broad brush of a northerly wind,
He sees at last outside the lines:
On his plodding trek from here to there,
from fear to Edgar's place;
He finds his gait to be impaired
and strains to keep apace.
It was Edgar who had shown the way,
whose footprints he walked upon;
treading carefully lest he go astray,
now he finds all bearings gone.
Gone now, the haven of time-honored sameness;
Lost now, the refuge of measured steps along
a tell-tale path of metric ruin.
No sound, but a muffled heartbeat.
Then, in the icy air of night, the peal of a bell
and the cry of a raven pierce the shadows.
The wheat field is baptized in moonlight,
and the footprints eulogized in snow.
Casting a yearnful gaze to the wheat field
and a tearful nod to the raven,
He steps out into the virgin landscape,
leaving tracks all his own in the night.
©2011 R.J. Gardner - All Rights Reserved