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Wrapped in remembrance of you

BUTTERFLIES AND LILACS
(And Whispers On The Breeze)

Sorry I missed you today.
I waited for your return,
thinking it might be any moment.
I was there to tell you how sorry
I am that I allowed so much time
to pass between visits. I came
to tell you how much I love you,
and that I need you in my life.

I sat on your porch swing, where
we shared our laughter in days
gone by. It was quiet there,
and I thought I could hear
our voices from way back then.
I allowed my thoughts to drift,
as I was carried away in memory;
the heady scent of lilacs drugging
my contact with the present.

Perhaps I even dozed, awaking
when I heard you call my name.
I turned, but you were not there.
A butterfly hovered in front of my face,
as if it had something to tell me,
then turned and flew away,
as I heard your voice whisper,
“Goodbye, old friend”.

I learned later,
that you had passed away
that afternoon. A time that I was
wrapped in remembrance of you.
A time of lilac scent, butterflies,
and whispers on the breeze.

Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck – 8/27/03

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These things are mine to treasure

MY LEGACY

I have no wealth to leave behind
But I give to you, the best . . .
Magnificence of the richest kind
From God’s great treasure chest

There’s summer sunset’s splendor
As it paints the heavens red
There’s diamond spattered night skies
And rainbows overhead
There’s dandelions that scatter gold
Across earth’s counterpane
The rippling of a drowsy stream
Near winding country lane
The blessing of a cooling breeze
On scorching summer days
Moonbeams through one’s window panes
And morning’s warming rays
The forest’s cooling canopies
That shelter woodland floor
Embracing life that dwells within
And, yes, there’s plenty more

There’s sweet melodic lullabies
That come from feathered choirs
There’s plains, desserts, and valley floors
And lofty mountain spires
A flash of red against the snow
When cardinals wing on by
And sapphire hues the bluebird flaunts
Against a cirrus sky
The scent of lilac’s rich perfume
That floats upon the air
And the evening’s orchestrations
Of insects singing there
The petaled beauty of a rose
With rich satiny feel
Where lady-bugs and butterflies
Enjoy a nectared meal

These things are mine to treasure
As long as I shall live
Yet, they belong to everyone
So they’re not mine to give

11/26/97 Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

6’th. … Ark. W C – 2001

Her essence in scraps of paper

HER ESSENCE

After she was gone
I found scraps of paper
everywhere.
Each piece torn
from whatever was at hand
when thoughts possessed her mind,
or touched her heart.
Little reminders
jotted down when senses
stirred her to capture
a piece of beauty
or a fragment of emotion.
Words, phrases, ideas
upon which she would
later elaborate.
Drawing from those small
scraps, pages of stirring
discourse that could make
one lose himself
in laughter, or touch
one’s heart to tears.
Those bits of written
emotion reflect how she
found beauty in everything,
and she comes alive
in the words
she jotted down
Musing about their value,
I could not destroy them.

In my closet upon a shelf,
there is a candy box
that holds her essence.
It is full of life and love
recorded on scraps of paper,
reminding me of her.
She was a poem.

2/5/93 Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

UNTIL NEXT YEAR

‘Tis the evening of Christmas and in our old house
The snoring shakes windows . . . I speak of my spouse
He said he’s exhausted, though not one to shirk
He just looked on, as I did the work

I purchased and wrapped ….. ‘twas left up to me
Baked cookies galore and put up the tree
Now the kids are playing with a few old toys
The new ones are broken; so much for new joys

The floor is quite messy with boxes and bows
And discarded ribbons . . . along with new clothes
New puppy just did what puppies do best
He wet on the floor, his hourly quest.

The fireplace clogged – I was choking on smoke
My husband kept snoring and never awoke
The tree got knocked over – I cleaned up the mess
What happens next, is anyone’s guess

Hot chocolate spilled from a broken mug
And cookies got ground right into the rug
The turkey’s a carcass, the leftover’s, few
I’m left with the dishes, but that’s nothing new

And out in the kitchen where pans are piled high
I scrub and I scour, and I sigh . . . and I sigh
Am I tired? You bet! I’ve stayed up too late
So fell fast asleep with my face in my plate

We waited all year for this wonderful day
And I’m glad that the next one’s A FULL YEAR AWAY

11/22/95 Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck
(revised 12/02)

A Haiku, better late than never

HAIKU

Sleepy maple trees

dropping crisp scarlet treasures

fall’s jeweled carpet

12/11/99 Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

A Harsh Melody

WINTER’S SONG

Like a crazed banshee, the bitter wind moaned,
while snow coated limbs until the trees groaned,
branches thrashed windows in cacophony —
a harsh melody that winter intoned.

9/8/94 Phyllis DeWitt VanVleck

Words dancing in my head

DAY DREAMS

I’d like to write enough to use
Words dancing in my head,
With all the things I have to say –
said.

I’d like to have a million bucks,
And spend it as I thought,
With all the things I’ve wished to buy –
bought.

I wish that all delicious food
Would not increase my weight,
With all the things I like to eat –
ate.

I wish there was a tape somewhere
When my guitar’s re-strung,
With all the songs I love to sing –
sung.

I’d like to break old habits now,
Of writing-trends I’ve kept,
With all the missing hours of sleep –
slept.

If I could satisfy my dreams,
I hope I would not gloat,
With all the things I wish to write –
wrote.

7/21/05 Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

Inspired by Mary Sadler