Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: April And Then May

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate

Few poets can match the image-making of Union’s Kate Barnes. Her gift with the image is on full display in this week’s poem.

April and Then May by Kate Barnes

April and then May,
violets up in the field,
the ewes with their twin lambs;

time has decided
to turn into spring again
after all.
The maples are unfolding their leaves,
chives stand green at the kitchen door,
the black flies have decided to come back;
and the work mare has her new foal
capering over bluets in the pasture,
and the hall smells of daffodils;
and everything
is divinely ordinary—
the deep ruts in the field track,
the spring overflowing,
the excited swallows,
the apple trees

budding for perhaps the hundredth time—
and the pruned boughs budding too
that must bloom just where they lie.

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 1994 by David R. Godine. Reprinted from Where the Deer Were, David R. Godine, 1994, by permission of David R. Godine. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to David Turner, Special Assistant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at 207-228-8263 or poetlaureate@mainewriters.org.