Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: Valentines

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate

Marcia Brown, Portland?s poet laureate, creates such drama in her description of the birds she and her husband discover, we miss for a moment that her poem for Valentine?s week is about the two of them as well.

Valentines by Marcia F. Brown

Flame in the snow-bowed lilac tree,
flare of yellow beak, coal nugget eye ?
I want to call you jubilantly
and I do ? Come, quickly ? Look!
And you do, and there we are
at the kitchen window, my hands
damp above the suds, you
in your storm coat, halfway out the door
to shovel a foot of new snow. Both of us
suddenly blissful and buoyed 
by this eruption of red
in the flocked and frosted
wedding cake of our yard. Now 
he is joined by the muted rose
of his mate. If they had something to do,
it seems to be right here, poised
between frozen buds, the storm
moving out to sea, an unexpected sunset
lighting the trees like glass, tinting
the long field coral. Startling too,
how together, they unfold like paper hearts
and are gone.

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2010 Marcia F. Brown. Reprinted from What on Earth, Moon Pie Press, 2010, by permission of Marcia F. Brown. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, Special Consultant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at mainepoetlaureate@gmail.com or 207-228-8263. Take Heart: Poems from Maine, an anthology collecting the first two years of this column, is now available from Down East Books.