Soft pine carpet
Where birds silently land
And gentle rain disappears
My love beside me
Beneath a towering canopy
Of green shade
A place of heavenly rest
Of warm hope for future dreams
The brook speaks in a calming voice
The trail we crossed
Stopped here so our minds could wander
Love within and beauty in view
This place of spaciousness
Contains the things to give me passage
To look beyond this day
And turn memories into smiles of contentment
And wishes into tomorrow’s happiness
© Rick Wyman
This piece of earth,
So clearly framed in my mind’s eye,
Transformed life into a watercolor.
Brush strokes blended like free flowing rain.
This piece of earth,
My masterpiece in the making,
Faded when others took it away.
While my eyes were closed,
They stole my brush,
To make changes upon my vision.
They muddied up the vibrant colors,
With lack of caring.
Where birds once sang
And flowers bloomed,
Is filled with weeds
And branches without fruit.
This piece of earth,
That had pulled my heart to its beauty,
Now scarred by others,
Shunned me away.
I sadly left it there,
With those whose care was false.
They framed it as a decoy,
And hid this piece of earth so well,
It died alone.
Sometimes I hear my breath turn cold,
From behind I think I’ve gotten too damn old.
But then there’s a ray of bright warm sun,
That takes my memory on a run.
The days replay upon my mind,
My life’s truly one of a kind.
Drawing a line across the sky,
More than just clouds drifting by.
Those dreams are seeping out in my words,
Carried from my heart by singing birds.
Love keeps me in this worldly space,
The need for warmth shows on my face.
I’ve never hoped for anything more,
Than those with me now I adore.
A half century of empty years,
Turned to love, happiness and cheers.
I’ll live the rest of my life,
With the love of my daughter and wife.
© Rick Wyman
Life is so uncertain,
Even when it’s fun.
At any time the curtain
Comes down, the rope undone.
Dreams fell below the sky.
The rain drenched my sleeves
My heart beat asking why Continue reading →
Winter has always been a fun time of the year for kids in Vermont, even though the adults are worrying about the heating bill. As the snow mounts up, kids see it as a great opportunity to make another snow fort, sliding trail, or make a higher ski jump.
When I was a kid growing up in rural Vermont, I remember we had an old logging road that opened up a clear path on the side of the mountain next to my house. We went to great lengths to groom the “sliding tracks” in the middle of it. Kids from all over the valley came together to go there and slide down the hill. There were only a few slight corners on the trail, and depending on how fast you were going, and on what you were riding, the curves were usually fairly easy to negotiate. Even so, there were several times I barely made it to the bottom in one piece!
One winter day, one of the neighbor boys named Joe came over to slide down this particular hill. He brought his toboggan that fit three people. We dragged it up the steep part of the hill to the spot where the pines started to get a little thicker, on the first flat area. It was a long way for a couple of kids, probably between 1/8th and ¼ of a mile. Joe was to be the back passenger and use his feet to help brake and turn the back of the toboggan. I was the front navigator as I kneeled and used my hands to twist the front curve of the contraption.
Joe always seemed to have a wide grin on his face when we were ready to start our “flight” down the hill. I think we were both over anxious. About half way down the trail, there was a railroad crossing with snow banks on either side of the tracks, and you could catch air going over them. Then there was a steep straight away all the way to the dirt road at the bottom, which was flanked by very high snow banks. We would turn sharply before we got to the first snow bank and slide sideways up to the edge of it to stop. (At least that was the plan.)
This particular run started off with a heart stopping push and we quickly got into position as if we were Olympic bob sled contestants. I was kneeling and Joe was holding down the back as we passed quickly through the first clearing and swung into a narrow corner. I could see on the edge of the trail was a low brush pile. I gripped the curl on the toboggan and leaned to the left, and yelled for Joe to put his boot into the snow to slow and help turn the rig. He did as told, and put his foot out, but instead of slowing us down, he caught his leg in the brush heap. Before I knew it, he was pulled right off the toboggan and my ability to slow down was suddenly gone. My heart was racing as I thought of the snow bank at the bottom Continue reading →
I don’t remember very many social events I attended as a kid, but I do remember one birthday party I went to when I was 6 or 7 years old. It was for a class mate one year older than I was. He was in second grade and I was in first, and lived at the upper end of the same country road I lived on. There were games to play and cake to eat. It was fun to see everyone competing in “pin the tail on the donkey”. I remember that game in particular because when his mother put the blind fold on me, she left a small opening on the bottom of the cloth that I could see out of. I didn’t want to be too close to the tail because it would seem like I cheated, so I pretended I was Continue reading →
Stepping on river rocks and ice,
Shadows of trout race by.
Snowbanks rise steeply.
Memories unfreeze my youth,
As warm thoughts of then,
Come back to me.
Eyes closed and vivid sounds trickle,
Boots slipped between snow mounded stones,
Where I searched for calm between the banks.
Freezing air awakened a need to go home,
Though I wish I could stay here listening.
February kept a promise,
Between the lighted window of home,
And time alone on the stream.
© Rick Wyman
Soft eyes of youth
Gaze upon opening wounds of flesh.
Abstract violence from behind glass.
When it’s gone
No smells and no bodies to remove
But the mind holds the image forever
With no empathy to slow an adult hand.
(c) Rick Wyman
Growing up in the country in the 1950’s, we often used the landscape for play. the “Big Rock” as we all called it was in the background of many good times. It was also the location for a couple of catastrophes of mine.
I recall my early tree climbing training. I’m a self- taught tree climber, school of hard knocks type lessons. A couple of the neighbor boys and I were out near the big rock and the older and bigger of the two, Keith was discussing how he could climb the wild cherry tree that grew in the stone wall. I decided that was good idea too, and began climbing right behind him. He was, as I said taller and had a longer reach so he was able to grab the first limb and begin upward progress right away. I jumped and barely grabbed the branch, but followed right behind, mimicking his choice of limbs.
We were quite a ways up and I was right under Keith waiting to take the next branch. As he went upwards, I put my arms up and grabbed the branch he was standing on. His weight evidently was all the strength the branch could muster, and as I pulled with my hands and searched for a place to get footing, the branch snapped. Continue reading →
It was a beautiful fall day in Vermont, and the bow and arrow season for deer had just started the weekend before. It was a week day and there was no school that day. I hadn’t had my drivers’ license for that long but I had quite a bit of experience driving back roads and standard shift vehicles. A neighbor was anxious to go deer hunting with me and we decided to ride around looking for a good place. Due to the fact there was no school, my little brother was also home. I was 16 and he was 10, and I didn’t particularly want to have him ride along or go hunting with me at the time. I felt that I was older and shouldn’t have to babysit him when I wanted to go out in the woods, but he insisted on coming along.
Somehow I came up with the idea that if I scared him with my driving he’d want to stay home and leave us alone. I told my neighbor friend, David, that I was going to drive in a wild stunt to scare my little brother into wanting to be brought home. He grinned as if he thought it was a fun idea and was ready for it. We were a couple of miles from my house on the dirt road, and headed toward Cavendish and in third gear. The car was a 1964 Chevy station wagon, 3 speed standard on the Continue reading →