The Distant Drumming Of Spring

At the thud of every winter the young lover
begins watching the old man on the farm
because years ago he discovered
a curious yearly alarm.
As soil becomes solid
the heart turns to stone
so the last of the shovel’s falling
is the first of the annual moan.
The pounding of the spade
cannot fight its wintry rest,
so dies the pounding
in the hopeful lover’s chest.

The water in the farmer’s streams
freezes over the mud
like the quiet drag and murmur
of the sleeping boy’s trickling blood.
The plants that once daily sipped
from the water holes on the farm
are as dead as the boys lips
drained of their wit, color and charm.
He wakes covered in wool
and looks to his window strangely
but with his neighbors fields under blankets of snow
he knows the tundra has no mood for changing.

March visits them with one sunny day.
The farmer taps around his roots and trees.
The lover claps off his shoes
though they both know it’s a tease.
Somewhere locked away
in the center of the earth
their hearts are beating softly
waiting for their yearly birth
and like the old man with his shovel
and the boy fidgeting an empty ring
all quiet hearts are waiting
for the distant drumming of spring.