Sam Calhoun

close up photo of wet grass

Sam Calhoun is a writer and photographer living in Elkmont, AL. He is the author of one chapbook, “Follow This Creek” (Foothills Publishing). His poems have appeared in Pregnant Moon Review, Westward Quarterly, Offerings, Waterways, and other journals.

Wishing (for the ones no longer here)

Here where it never snows
the dandelions still bloom,
hang their torches low
with frost, still room
in the weedy embankment
for aster, for goldenrod,
still the contentment
to hold those pods
not for spring,
nor the end of winter bitters,
but any rain, any rain
to take these seeds, to scatter,carry them on leaves,
carry them on splintered
sticks washed from the eaves.
I see them bobbing tethered
together in ways we can’t understand,
watching how willow
touches everything like a hand,
friends, you can count
their marcescent leaves
like dangling obituaries
degraded, nothing left to read
save the name of some distant estuary.
Or now, glancing the window,
blurring the banner of mailbox,
and the diminishing return of cards,
and the replenishing return of red fox
to the edge of our yard.
Here are the gifts waiting, less bright,
less than before the clouds,
wishing the stars back to sight,
that silent echo so sudden, so loud.