Saturday, February 18, 2017

"Through the Veil"

Through the Veil 

Every year Stork's Tower's adorned
for the Chrysanthemum Festival,
autumn nuzzles the Black Forest,
fields of gold-ripened crops
and vineyards embrace
beneath sky's vast blue as steeples
and red roofs point toward heaven -

yet 1845 brought the potato blight
to Lahr, Baden-Wurttemberg
(German isn't exactly poetic...)
and Landolin Haas to Lady Liberty's shore
aboard the Rappahannock and perhaps
down the rivers Delaware and Schuylkill
to Pottsville, Pennsylvania
and soon through the doors
of St. John the Baptist
into the arms of Josepha Benedikte
of that same year.

1860 a Wisconsin farmer,
1863, a Civil War soldier...
1865 deceased -
a victim of battle or disease?

I follow the curve and slant
of Theresa Hershede's hand,
keeper of a rooming house,
immigration year 1870,
applying for naturalization ...

So many (great) Grandparents'
partial stories - ghosts upon paper
that flutter alive before me a bit -
who tilled the land still tilled today,
made vows in churches still standing,
in counties and towns I've driven past,
never knowing they are a part of me...

and I've only just begun;
so here's to the immigration trail
from Slovakia, southwest Germany,
and villages of Somerset England -
may lives glimmer once again
through the veil of time.

by Margaret Bednar, February 18, 2017

This is for a poetic prompt I am hosting at "Imaginary Garden of Real Toads - Artistic Interpretations - Immigrants".   Not only am I learning where my ancestors came to in America, but the homelands they came from... how cool to perhaps visit those places in Europe one day....

Sunday, February 12, 2017



A trickle of sweat
defies the rapidly moving paper fan
imprinted with the Savior's face.

My red tongue
swipes salt from my upper lip
almost revealing my secret.

His gentle eyes
seemingly acknowledge
my transgression

but I cannot resist temptation.

I pop another sinfully sour red explosion
into my mouth
careful not to swallow the pit.

The perfumed shade makes me think
for a moment I'm in Heaven
but the stickiness of the imperfect ones

upon the ground
causes me to stop fanning
and ask forgiveness.  He understands.

I hope Grandmother will too.

by Margaret Bednar, February 12, 2017

One of my earliest memories is of my grandmother's cherry trees and our family picking cherries in the summer.  My mom canned and I'm sure my love for cherry pie began with that tree.

This poem is reworked for a poetry group I belong to "Behind the Stacks" (they used to meet in a library) and the theme for February is "Food for Thought".

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Of Canna & Martins

Canna "Orange Beauty" flowers - Wrightsville Beach, NC
Of Canna & Martins

Towering titian beauties bold,
coronated, (or so it seems
as regally they don't bend)
stand tall and proud
as I, like a butterfly revere them
from my lowly adirondack chair -

sip a summer's refreshing drink,
watch Purple Martins swoop, dip,
and dine upon dragonflies
upon a scrim I'd liken to Pissarro -

all before me for but an eve
as I soak in the last rays
of this ocean-side holiday.

by Margaret Bednar, February 11, 2017

This could also have been entitled "February Blues" or "Longing for that Summer Vacation".   This will be linked with "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Sunday mini challenge - Recycle a Saying".  I loosely played with this Korean proverb:  "Butterflies come to pretty flowers"

Note:  I see I didn't read the directions of the challenge completely through - the rub was to change a word or two and do an altered version of the proverb...  I'll put my thinking cap on and give it another go perhaps with another poem.

Here are a few more proverbs I found wonderful:

"Spring won't come from one flower"  Persian proverb
"Patience is a flower that grows not in everyone's garden" Italian proverb
"Beauty without virtue is a flower without perfume" French proverb
"All flowers are not in one garland" English proverb
"Flowers leave some of their fragrance in the hand that bestows them" Chinese proverb
"A beautiful flower is incomplete without its leaves" Chinese proverb
"For the sake of the flowers, the weeds are watered" Arabic proverb
"An old man loved is a winter with flowers" German proverb
"Look before you leap, for snakes among sweet flowers do creep" German proverb
"All the flowers of tomorrow are in the seeds of yesterday" Italian proverb
"A kiss without a hug is like a flower without the fragrance" Maltese proverb

Thursday, February 9, 2017



Hadrian's Wall was built for war,
now weaves its way through cozy hamlets,
rolls past castles, forts, and Roman remnants,
along East River to the Irish Sea.

The other day I basked in winter's sun,
back against a wall, wind blocked,
secure, content as thawing limbs
frolicked upon its canvas.

Walls are built for protection,
and yet as late my mind keeps pondering
what it means for those who reside
on the other side.

by Margaret Bednar, February 9, 2017

I so would love to walk this path, along this wall some day...

This poem is linked with the challenge over at "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Music with Marian - Wall"

Hadrian's Wall - Timewatch by klidstone1970

Sunday, February 5, 2017

"Brooklyn Bridge"

The Brooklyn Bridge
Brooklyn Bridge

What great monuments man has made
that drape across East River's breadth -
incandescent portraits
of fortune, finesse, and fearlessness.

King's county bows its crown come morn,
Manhattan curtsies (but not demurely) mid cocktail hour -
such ceremony sliced
by tugs, ferries, ships, and boats

all beneath two gothic arches,
a cathedral suspended
clasping two together.

by Margaret Bednar, February 5, 2017

Kings county = Brooklyn

10 things you may not know about the Brooklyn Bridge

This is linked with "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Flash 55 Plus