July 21, 2014 by phicks2012
I write poetry for a lot of reasons — inspiration, provocation, publication, and, okay, just for the hell of it. Sometimes I see or hear something that moves me, or have a personal experience that pleases or incites me, and sometimes I look at an empty page waiting to be filled in a newsletter and think “What can I write to fill this space that people might actually enjoy?”
Admittedly, I’d rather write because I’m inspired or provoked, because the emotion and the words tend to come more quickly and surely, but I’ve sometimes surprised myself with what comes out due to simple need — and publication deadlines.
The verse below was written in October of 2000, mainly for later publication in “The Equinox”, our monthly newsletter for the SCA Shire of Sol Haven, but I think it turned out fairly well for all that. I hope that you will agree.
The harvest days have come and gone in garb of red and gold.
The fields lie fallow where the dancing grain
Did curtsey make unto the scythe before the nights grew cold,
Awaiting summer’s call to dance again.
The farrow of unruly spring hangs smoking in the shed,
And in the cellar fruits of warmer days,
Await the feasts of Christmastide when embers glowing red
Shall warm the hall where we our tankards raise.
The outer air is hung with frost, the cobbles silver glazed,
The stream runs ‘neath a coverlet of snow,
But in the hall the kettle steams and worthy deeds are praised
For we are truly bound to make it so.
So gather up your woolen cloaks and linger round the fire
Where songs are sung and bold tales you may hear,
And merry make while wintertide no service shall require
But that we share our bounty with good cheer.
And we shall sing a rousing song, and build the fire high,
And none with hunger ere shall be denied,
For we shall call the pilgrim in, and call the traveler nigh
To linger but a while at wintertide.
And if perchance they come to stay, then we will call them friends,
For each of us were travelers once before,
Until we came to find the place where every journey ends
And wintertide shall chill us nevermore.
[25 October, 2000]