Investment Strategies

At work we studied many charts and graphs
With due attention to the bottom line,
But had we dwelt upon our epitaphs
We would have spent our days decanting wine.

First published in The Flea.

 

Mosquitoes

I’d gladly give a pint or two a year—
extracted gently from my pulsing veins
by careful nurses tendering their dear
benignant ministrations—if it meant
I might then suffer less the little pains
and long anxieties for future bites
I’m subject to. They’re not by accident,
but from a dipteran proclivity
for plaguing me on sultry summer nights
when sleeves are contraindicated. Why
those little devils must drill into me,
since I would freely share my body’s sap
from china saucers, I don’t know. I try
To sympathize, but more than not I slap.

First published in Creosote

 

South of Eden

They also serve, who only wait at home
and sow their carrot seed in fertile loam,
in gardens just outside the kitchen door.
In times of need, especially times of war,
agrarian pursuits renew the lease
on life, the comfiture of inner peace,
that many noncombatants thought had gone
away forever.
__________Written in the dawn,
there is a subtext every gardener knows
by heart: a quaint bucolic ode the rows
of vegetables attest; a summer song
that’s manifested in the over-long
endurance daylight shows while staving off
the coming night; and measured lines of soph-
omoric prose, which prove too difficult
for those who’ve never tasted labor’s salt
to comprehend.
__________ _It’s all about the land,
the land worth fighting for where neighbors stand
together, tethered to a promise made
before the duty owed to clan was laid
in stone, before the right to life was shown
to be a gift impossible to own.

Though seed is sown to meet the creature need
of far tomorrows, nothing’s guaranteed.

First published in Poemeleon

 

C.B. Anderson was the longtime gardener for the PBS television series, The Victory Garden.  Hundreds of his poems have appeared in scores of print and electronic journals out of North America, Great Britain, Ireland, Austria, Australia and India.  His collection, Mortal Soup and the Blue Yonder was published in 2013 by White Violet Press.


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6 Responses

  1. T.M.

    I share your antipathy for mosquitoes, but I could never have put it so eloquently. Thanks for these verses.

    Reply
  2. Joseph S. Salemi

    Dermatologists say that mosquitoes like some persons more than others. It has to do with the natural efflorescences that come from different types of human skin.

    Reply
  3. David Watt

    An entertaining selection of poems incorporating the rich vocabulary we have come to expect. The distinctive form of “South of Eden” adds another layer of interest above that of the poem’s content.

    Reply
  4. C.B. Anderson

    Thank you all for the comments. David, the form is simply a continuous stream of rhyming couplets with an occasional stepped line that is analogous to a paragraph break in prose.

    Reply

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