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Sonnetto Poesia Vol 3 no 2 2004
Eric Linden
Audrey Manning
Helga Ross
Larry Tilander
Richard Vallance
Sara Russell
Esther Cameron & Jim Dunlap
Recommended Reading
Eric Linden







Snowfall January 2004

As dawn approaches, casting golden light
along the distant, eastern palisades,
it finds that endless clouds had come by night
and tinged the valley skies with cheerless shades.
The whitened hills where land and sky collide
portend that snow is looming in the air.
A baldachin [1] that spreads from side to side
Floats over lowlands like a proud corsair.
In silent rhythm, snowflakes are amassed
upon each leafless branch and twig. In white
tranquility, this wonderment - surpassed
by little else, is Nature's own delight.
A poet stands as awestruck by the scene
And seeks the words for "peaceful and serene".

© by Eric Linden Penticton B.C. 2004


"baldachin" = "A rich fabric of silk and gold brocade"

at here: = "baldachin"


  The Burnt Field

  A field down by the creek below the road
  Was ebon black from flames that had run through
  And burnt the grass, to leave a gaping scar
  That you could see quite clearly from afar.
  It burnt up to the creek and to the slough.

  The dead brown grass from last year left unmowed
  Was on the ground, laid flat by winter past.
  They burnt it off, new shoots were coming fast.
  The many shades of green arrive in spring
  With warmer days and sunshine in the vale ~
  Teal, cobalt, emerald, hazel, jade and pea,
  On field and forest, bush and willow tree.
  Where flames along the fallen grass set sail,
  Its wake tomorrow will be colouring!

  © by Eric Linden Penticton B.C. 2004




Silent in the Wilderness

The chaparral [1] that cloaks the rolling hills
With branches intertwined and evergreen
Is like a tangled tegumental [2] screen,
Protecting sacred sites from evil ills.
Where manzanita [3] guards a narrow trail
And chamisal [4] defends the hinterland,
The poison oak stands ready with its brand
Of punishment for those who would prevail.
Beyond the piñon [5], buckbrush, short scrub oak,
A mesa and its long abandoned cave
Reveal the sacrifices from the brave
Who ventured up with fragrant incense smoke.
The gods, the ancient spirits time forgot
Still dwell in silence near that welkin spot.

© by Eric Linden Penticton B.C. 2004

NOTES: (all definitions from

[1] "chaparral" = "A dense thicket of shrubs and small trees"
[2] "tegumental" = "A natural outer covering; an integument"
[3] "manzanita" = "Any of several evergreen shrubs or small trees of the genus Arctostaphylos of the Pacific coast of North America, especially A. manzanita, bearing white or pink flowers in drooping panicles and producing red berrylike drupes, from Spanish, "manzana" = "apple"
[4] "chamisal" = "A California rosaceous shrub (Adenostoma fasciculatum) which often forms an impenetrable chaparral"
[5] "piñon" = "Any of several pine trees bearing edible, nutlike seeds, especially Pinus edulis, of the western United States and Mexico. Also called nut pine"





For years it stood. That derelict old shack
Survived harsh winter winds and clear, hot days.
Its weather-beaten shades of blues and grays
Were rich in faded lore, both gold and black
Blind, paneless windows stare from front and back
As though they yearn once more with vacant gaze,
To see the simple joys of childhood ways -
Like cops and robbers in a mock attack.
On one spring morning just beyond the snow,
Huge flames licked skyward, free and uncontrolled,
Much like a demon on some hellish quest.
The hovel burned; one grand and final show
As time ebbed on it seemed its bell still tolled
Till silence reigned, and winds blew from the west.

© by Eric Linden Penticton B.C. 2004




Benji *

He rose mid-morning, stretched his legs and back,
Then turned and lumbered off along the trail.
Perhaps the rocky heights he'd need to scale
Would yield a princely trophy to attack.
Through tamarisk beside the riverbank
He made his way past grasslands, swamps and shrubs.
A time or two the sound of hoof beat drubs
Caused him to pause and give his head a crank.
At length he saw a buffalo and calf
Out in a clearing, grazing in the sun.
He licked his chops; his stomach had begun
To churn and turn... sharp pangs felt like a gaff.
A slow and silent, patient stalk commenced.
One final pounce - the Bengal tiger tensed.

© by Eric Linden Penticton B.C. 2004

* Strange as it may seem, this rather off-beat sonnet is based on actual fact.  A recent report by the CBC News just this past winter reported that a Bengal Tiger had broken lose from the Vancouver Zoo, and was calmly lumbering around local neighbourhoods causing quite a kafuffle.   Of course, he was scooped up and taken back home unharmed (poor little fella').

Richard Vallance


Page 3 Audrey Manning
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