Bob Ambrose is an environmental engineer who developed and applied water quality models for 40 years. He retired from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2009. He has been writing poetry since his retirement, and has been active in the Athens Word of Mouth community since January 2011. His poems often explore spirituality as well as scientific knowledge. He posts his meditations on our world of beauty and mystery at his blog-site “Reflections in Poetry.”
Waiting Passage into Fall
When a Southern August lays on hands,
a lush embrace of steamy weeks
sets in before the fall.
Through waning days I run the dawn
by tidy lawns refreshed with dew.
Their scent and sparkle stir anew
as memories reconstitute
old seasons born so long ago
in stain and sweat and schoolboy pride
forged from summer football trials
in heat and pads on high school fields
that to young minds must surely yield
triumphant Friday nights to come
if only August days would end
at last in break of fall.
Those Southern rites of passage echo yet
in aching muscles one-time strong.
They burn inside my body
decades on as by degrees
the morning dark seeps into day
and evening light melts away.
Locked in August once again,
the weeks pile up as all await
the break of heat that snaps the spell
while age and darkness creep, encroach,
and claim their share of fading light
for passage into fall.
Launched by poets Mark Flanigan and Jim Palmarini in 2014, Word of Mouth was inspired by the late Cincinnati poet Aralee Strange. Poets of all stripes are welcome to show up, listen, and mouth off.