Waiting for Thunder
I stopped my car once on a thin country road,
stepped out and looked west.
Standing near a field, post sunset
in the proximity of an old barn,
the gambrel roofline traced
by the light left on the horizon.
After shadows vanish, outlines linger.
Approaching the fence in silence
the eyes of several sheep close in
unshorn white wool on their backs
contrasted against dark grass.
A clean sky and rising moon make a canvas
for my thoughts, still not manifest.
At the bottom of a breath, a roll of thunder
jolts me from reverie, looking down
I see a ram shaking his fleece,
an unexpected greeting, more like drums.
Were we sharing more than space?
That was my first thought.
Moments like these carve deeply,
mark a place and time against the blur of years.
A shared moment with another creature
and a sound I won’t soon forget.
I ended up living at this farm
for several years when it came up for rent,
made good friends with the neighbors.
Not so with the ram, he was crotchety.
I often stood in that same spot evenings
looking just over the barn’s roofline
with my ears tuned, waiting for thunder.
Frank Babcock lives in Corvallis, Oregon and is a retired Albany middle school teacher and owner of a bamboo nursery. He writes poetry to share the strange thoughts that rattle around in his head and to get them off his mind. He started with an interest in the beatnik poets, Ferlinghetti and Ginsberg. He has a long way to go and much to write before he sleeps.