November 3, 2016

Three Poems by G. Louis Heath: "A Shrill Cry on the Wind," " Love of Nothing," and "Lyrics Larder"

G. Louis Heath, Ph.D., Berkeley, 1969, is Emeritus Professor, Ashford University, Clinton, Iowa. He enjoys reading his poems at open mics. He often hikes along the Mississippi River, stopping to work on a poem he pulls from his back pocket, weather permitting. His books include Leaves Of Maple: An Illinois State University Professor’s Memoir of Seven Summers’ Teaching in Canadian Universities, 1972-1978, Long Dark River Casino, and Redbird Prof: Poems Of A Normal U, 1969-1981. He has published poems in a wide array of journals.


A Shrill Cry on the Wind

On the trail home, through crusted snow, he saw a silhouette
in the mist. A shrill cry rode the chill wind that swept the

mist away and the shape-shifting feathered figure departed.
The air had been striated and thick with teeming snow, the

smell of death upon it. Now the mist had cleared into an
azure sky as an erratic wind lifted a spume of powder

across his moccasins. The brisk air flashed with sun-struck
motes of frost. The snow owl had not called his name today.

Love of Nothing

Love of Nothing inveigled
her cohort, soon of age,
demography writ small,
in ten-point picaresque font.
Black nails, jeweled noses,
green hair beguiled,
mosh pit of punk.

I found my daughter in a
desert city, on a strange
street, where vendors
sold candied dates turned
sour with Nothing. But
I could not cry. No tears,
at least not yet.

Pam had fled here,
in pursuit of Something,
to a desert without
flowers, where armies
of sand made a City
of Nothing.

My face flushed red
but no color could dwell.
I too had courted Nothing
in a place like this,
where I found Something.

Lyrics Larder

The past year I suffered Sonnet’s Block. To write one, I must
get in my car and drive to the Lyrics Store at Bard and Avon.

Beyond the frozen food section, just before beverages, I find
the Muse aisle. I browse shelf talkers shouting out lyrics,

cheapest to the top lines. I clutch my coupons in a sweaty hand.
I can only fill my Lyrics Larder on the cheap. I buy several lyrical

lines. I hope the ink begins to flow after I enjoy these mellifluous
Sugar Sonnets (a trademark, not my confection). I want to get home

to see if these sweet lyrics can cure my Sonnet’s Block and give me
the Sonnet High I seek. If they do, look for odes of sonnets from me.

~G. Louis Heath

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