Recently returned home from several winter weeks in Fort Myers, FLA. Of course, it wasn’t long before I found myself in front of the poetry shelf.

I was in the mood for a poet known for telling it like it is, Romanian-born Canadian, Irving Layton [1912-2006].  Chose “A Wild Peculiar Joy: Selected Poems”. Random poem shared here without judgment or censorship, at page 200, is Early Morning Sounds.

I’d love to hear what you think, your reactions, what feelings or memories the piece evokes:


Ripe plums are on the table.
I can bang the cupboard door shut.
Eternity dots the kitchen with particulars.

Why should I listen to the impotent whirr
of wings, the buzz-buzz of fat flies,
the sunlight shrunk to what’s on their backs?
To a chromatic sneer?

What have I to do with hell’s shriekdoms
or the pursy sons of Abraham?
What fly threatens foreclosure
if I don’t turn up my hearing-aid?

In my garden the only sounds I hear
are leaves rustling, the receding purr of tires.
The morning glory opens its countenance
to the world. How fresh everything smells.

Remote from all men lie for and kill
I am on holy ground. The innocence
of nature’s cannibalism heals and purifies.
The grass’s whispering stuns me.

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart Ltd.
ISBN: 0-7710-4948-x

Other “Off the Shelf” Selections.