Monday, January 2, 2012


I wrote the following poem over 30 years ago. It was inspired by an Andrew Wyeth painting titled "Tenant Farmer," which depicts a farmhouse in Chadd's Ford, Pennsylvania. The muted colors and stark landscape in the painting capture perfectly the light and chill of an autumn afternoon during hunting season. As is the case with so much of Wyeth's work, the details of the house are suggestive of the lives within.

A stark willow displays its gem,
a stiff deer hanging
like some machined gadget in a drafter's kit.
Or like the house,
The house, smoky-bricked and shattered,
straining to remain complete.
A dwelling jigsaw-puzzled.
Windows seek each other in crazed masonry,
but one, uppermost, yawns open
to inhale the storm's grey cold.