Island Park Storm

A wall of dark clouds
Adds a new gray horizon.
Lightning streaks down.

Shoals of small fish jump
On the shadowed, calmed, water
Like living rain drops.

The air starts to move.
Fat drops pock-mark the beach sand.
We dash for the car.

Lightning and thunder
Become simultaneous.
The rain pounds our roof.

Roads become rivers;
Headlights ripple through windshields;
Wipers can't keep up.

Stately houses loom,
Darkened by the storm's false night,
As we drive t'ward home.

Then the downpour stops.
We can hear ourselves again,
Splashing into sun.


© 1988 Michael Yanega


Night Camp

There is nothing to see but branches.
Overhead they wave in the firelight;
Sparks rise and swirl, then vanish.

The wind sings with a leafy throat.
Frogs and crickets join the song,
Bold in the rustling darkness.

Clothes smell like smoke.
Dirt seeps through every seam.
A bath would be such luxury.

We put off the moment of turning in.
Not wanting to shut out the night.
(Also avoiding the crowded tent).

The sleeping bag rattles the tent floor,
And snags on our clothes as we
Try to wiggle down out of the chill.

Nightnoises mingle with breathing
And giggles give way to snores.
Soon only the wind is awake.


© 1989 Michael Yanega


Blackbirds tumble down;
Swirling, golden-eyed black leaves
Calling each other.

Paper-like leaves and
Leaf-like papers skitter by,
Looking for a wall.

The smell of wood-bark,
Rotting-apple sweet and sour,
From gardens, sweeps by.

Sycamores, sweet gums.
Red, green and gold rattles
Shaking in the gusts.

Fast-moving gray clouds.
Wind, hair-flying, coat-flapping.
Laugh to be alive!


© 1988 Michael Yanega

Garden World

Green knife blades, toothed with glass
Arc overhead, filtering sunlight.
Shadows stripe across boulders
As the wolf spider hunts his forest.


© 1995 Michael Yanega


Lonely Homecoming

Fish filled the river
Two weeks ago, but not now --
Just one single fish.

Fighting to return;
Driven by the homing urge.
Following the scent.

Battered and peeling,
Thrashing through the shallow stream
Past the shattered bones.


© 2000 Michael Yanega

Date of this page version 11-3-00

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