The grasses, flowing amber on the breeze
that speaks to me in verses intimate,
are stilled, as if contented to appease
my meditative spirit, to permit
obeisance from afar to monuments
of lifeless stone. Shall not eternity
be brashly coveting my every sense
in moments soon to come? My destiny
awaits beneath these fronds, their silhouettes
like countless sentinels whose fealty
is pledged to passing souls who stir regrets
amidst retreating autumn verdancy,
where warmth and succor from the morning mist
are of a sudden never to exist.

First published in The Lyric, Summer 2021



Winter Moment  

The silent flakes of snow, like dainty white
and flitting whimsies in a frenzied quest
to join as one, unerringly alight
upon my path, as if at my behest.
The odor, sweet, of burning maple curls
through thickened flurry walls; a wolflike whine
betrays the gale arising as it swirls
and bullies through the tips of stubborn pine.
The cabin beckons me; a dullish light
prepares me for a welcome interlude
of warmth and sustenance, an age-old rite,
an intercourse of fire and solitude.
The wintry pomp and bluster need not cease,
for in my womblike refuge I’m at peace.

First published in The Lyric, Winter 2022



Paul Buchheit is an author of books, poems, essays, and scientific journal articles. He recently completed his first historical novel, 1871: Rivers on Fire.  His poetry has appeared in The Lyric, Illinois State Poetry Society, Poets & Patrons of Chicagoland, Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest, Society of Classical Poets, and other publications.

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The Society of Classical Poets does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or commentary.

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20 Responses

  1. Anna Martino

    You have rendered me utterly speechless! The diction, the cadence the imagery and everything else about these poems is sublime, perfection! Much accolades!!
    (Are your books available on Amazon?)

    • Paul Buchheit

      Thank you so much, Anna! I have a few books on Amazon, working on a poetry collection.

  2. Dan Ward

    The mystery of Life, so precious and yet so fleeting, captured very powerfully in Cemetery. Winter Moment is also an enjoyable read. Thanks for this nice pair of sonnets.

  3. Brian Yapko

    Paul, both of these sonnets are quite beautiful. “Cemetery” has a depth and meditative quality that aches but is but dry-eyed. That eternity should act “brashly” suggests to me an interesting struggle between mortality and inevitability. Winter is an evocative snapshot of a moment in time punctuated by the wolf-like whine of the gale. I enjoyed reading these very much.

  4. Cynthia Erlandson

    Marvelous imagery and musicality! I, too, think cemeteries are beautiful.

  5. Paul Buchheit

    Thanks, Cynthia! Yes, my kids used to think it was strange that I loved walking or jogging thru the cemetery. 😉

  6. Paul Freeman

    Two well-rendered poems.

    From here in the Middle East, ‘The wintry pomp and bluster need not cease,
    for in my womblike refuge I’m at peace’ is pure nostalgia.

    Thanks for the reads, Paul.

  7. Mary Gardner

    Paul, you demonstrate the rare skill of transporting the reader into the poem. Thank you for these lovely works.

  8. Anna J. Arredondo

    I agree with Mary. I was transported to two distinct places and states of mind. I found the wintry one particularly exquisite!

  9. C.B Anderson

    Lovely stuff, Paul. It reminds me of what I long ago dared to write in order to appear on the pages of The Lyric. The rule of survival there is: be honest, but don’t be transgressive.

  10. Susan Jarvis Bryant

    Two beautiful poems… I especially like Winter Moment for its snowy atmospheric splendor and the cozy closing couplet.

  11. Margaret Coats

    Paul, this is a lovely autumn-and-winter pair of sonnets to enjoy especially during November. “Wintry Moment” is an exceptionally economical snowstorm scene including just about everything a reader might want. But I like “Cemetery” for the abrupt surprise ending that is not really a surprise after all.


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