About Nothing – a poem by Carolyn Martin

About Nothing


This morning nothing’s on my mind but feeding
backyard birds and tracking the light frost lounging
on the neighbors’ roofs. The sun is on tour  
through Douglas firs and I’m curious about melting time. 

Then it occurred I should pencil in slogging 
through the grass to chide the moss winter didn’t kill
and praise bleeding hearts’ return. And what a mistake
to miss the star magnolia tree. Its pussy willows
bloom before they turn to leaves.

I should contemplate the confused cactus 
in the family room announcing Christmas
in early spring. Followed by closets needing breathing space
and bookshelves begging for relief from never-reads.
Of course, I could catalog every wall
and re-evaluate excessive steel-cut art, 
photographs, ceramic plaques designed to motivate.
A favorite? What can you afford to live without? 

I’d love to grab a pen and explore
Buddha’s claim contentment is the greatest wealth,
but a sparrow is peeking through the sliding door.
Her hungry eyes complain I forgot 
what I woke this morning for. Nothing
isn’t nourishing, she bobs her head. Agreed.

Carolyn Martin is a lover of gardening and snorkeling, feral cats and backyard birds, writing and photography. Her poems have appeared in more than 130 journals throughout North America, Australia, and the UK. She is the poetry editor of Kosmos Quarterlyjournal for global transformation. Find out more at www.carolynmartinpoet.com.

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