Thelma Schiller

(Concrete, Washington)

Church In The Mist

Poem by Thelma Schiller

What shore is this... my ship still lists?
What Church slow-rising from the mists?
Where penguins lay their eggs in albatross- square,
Streams cascade down the rocky cliffside where
Archangels guard the weather-beaten door,
Revealed through golden rigging near the shore.
Five pod of orcas prowl the inland-sea,
And spray moist breath on fjord's narrow lee.
I'm safe at last on grassy solid ground,
is this a Russian coast my sails have found?
Or could it be the domes of Taj Mahal?
An English sermon floats its morning-call...
A mystic domed cathedral faces shore...
I stumble from my ship and reach the door;
Not knowing: spend long hours in days of fevered sleep;
And wake to see the sunshine rising from the deep:
A Turner painting in bright colors caught
A hundred years before this church was wrought.

Ice blocks from glaciers break and plunge to sea;
A floatplane crosses glacier-tor near me,
While logs and branches spin in log-jammed stream,
Ride churning channel..eddy like a dream
The fluted bark of hemlock hikes the hills,
With cornflower-sunbeams spraying on the rills.
The air is loud..cicadas buzz in trees,
The smell of moist fern stirs in drying breeze,
And Turner's palette mixes right degree.
Of water, light, and glowing sun in sea.
I think I hear the roar of glacier-calf..
Draw back in fear, but tourists only laugh.
I join their tents and salmon-cooking feast,
Forgetting fear of iceberg and wild beast.

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Read poems about / on: weather, sea, sunshine, fear, water, dream, sleep, sun, light, rose, tree

Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 2, 2003