C.W.Holeman III

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"You're in America now," I said. "Our idea of diplomacy is showing up with a gun in one hand and a sandwich in the other and asking which you'd prefer."

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As A River Swiftly; The View From My Veranda

Sunset

As A River Swiftly; The View From My Veranda
By C.W.Holeman III
Copyright 16 March 2015


I came out to sit; to rest and breathe; to doze out in the sun.
I blink'd, and yawned and find myself here at summer's end.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

When last I'd look'd at my peonies, they had begun to bud.
The grass so green and how lush, now fading into straw.
Yet now I look and all around, the apples already fall.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

Blossoms in the heather sway'd, gently by the river.
But now I see have fallen flat, swiftly shift to fading.
And all about in trees so grand, I see their leaves
-their colors once so gay and bright- now shift from green to fire.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

O' hold! I've yawned again once more.
But now I find before my eyes, winter in the weather!
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

The dew has fled and now 'tis frost, crunching underfoot.
The mist is gone, the rain has changed, floating through the air,
Now soft and white, to my delight, I catch it on my tongue.
Now I am cold, and I do shiver, amazement in my eyes,
as by the banks where once they swam, the deer -on foot-
they stamp across the river!
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

Up in the sky on wing I see a raven and below,
walking, pecking, seeking food, a black and puffed up crow.
With joy they caw so happily, so free.
She dives and swoops and cackles with delight.
He strides with might and pompousness, then trips face-first, caught by white soft snow.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

I look again and what I see, frankly it astounds me!
The ice has fled! The snow is gone!
The river now is rushing!
I rub my eyes and look again, surely they have deceived me.
And yet they've not; O' how the time, it is quite reckless rushing!
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

So many moments gone unseen,
the year, already vanished.
I look ahead and all seems still,
yet now is past so swiftly.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

Around I gaze, and all about are flowers budding, blooming.
The white has left, now green has might.
The days are longer now, they strive against the night.
I breathe in deep, to catch the scents, they won't be long about.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

A fawn I see, and eggs in trees.
Mothers now, and fathers!
Crow and deer from heather rise, to frolic in the grass and skies.
With joy and glee, so merrily they prance and sing and dance.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!

Where vibrant stalks of grasses grew,
I see now golden stalks.
I year has gone since I came out.
My head it is now spinning.
But how? But how so soon?
I've only just sat down!


This was originally written as I traveled by rail across Asia. As I watched the countryside flash past I realized that my year in the Orient was going to be over before I could even get a good look at where I was, let alone get a good idea where I was going next.