Ralph Skip Stevens
I live and write on Little Cranberry, an island off the coast of Maine. In twelve years of living here I've found this to be a great place to write, probably because something in me likes being on a granite rock surrounded by the Atlantic. But I also read a lot and draw inspiration from books as well as from my surroundings. (A love of books is the main reason I also teach English - online, at Coppin State University in Baltimore.) I recently published my first poetry collection, At Bunker Cove, and have poems in various magazines.
Waiting for the Wind to Drop
Today the dog held his barking
while I put my clothes on.
We went out in the rain
along a path covered with moss,
a surprising green beneath the dark
arms of spruce. Our way
ended on the rocks
high above the sea where
the rain ran nearly flat
across the waves.
It was good, with the dog
patient beside me,
to see the whole of it,
wind and rain spread out
in the grey-green of sky.
I had no fear of the night to come
when I would lie awake
waiting for the wind to drop,
listening for whatever night bird
might be calling.
Walking the Dog
I like to think I’m working but
I’m just waiting for the dog
to say he wants to go outside.
The house is chilly, this October
morning, so I’ll light a fire first.
The dog, being young and heedless,
races back and forth across the trail
into pools that fill the hollows
after recent rain, floundering where
the water’s deeper than he expected.
I stick to the path, skirt these
water holes, and contemplate my envy
of an animal whose nose
makes him alive to a different world,
working through each forest scent
with no concern for work. Yet in the end
we will be one, dog and I,
back at my desk,
he resting by my feet
in the now warm house.
©2017 Ralph Skip Stevens
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