I was brought up and still live in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia so I rely on imagery derived from the natural landscape to explore human relationships. My wife, Elizabeth, and I have two daughters and three grandchildren. I have been an architectural woodcarver for over 35 years and have written numerous articles and three books on the subject. My poetry has appeared in Shenandoah, Green Mountains Review, The Lyric, The South Carolina Review, Southern Poetry Review, and others.
The phone bugles too early for daylight,
the lamp swears in a blinding surprise,
and jerked from dreams to erasing white
our lives are reduced to surmise.
Who calls in these hours before dawn,
before the vulture stretches and flies,
before pearly Venus can chance a yawn?
Our lives are reduced to surmise
how our granddaughter has fought fever,
the unseen viruses, traitors, and spies,
how comfort needs comfort to relieve her.
Our lives are reduced to surmise.
Go. I will not hold you in our bed
when compassion calls us to be wise,
to hold the pallid hand, the burning head,
our lives no longer surmise.
I will follow for the fever’s breaking,
for dawn’s promise again her prize,
for our love there is no mistaking,
our lives free from surmise.
©2016 Frederick Wilbur