Saturday, May 31, 2014

Flame Azalea

Appalachian native flame azalea

Flame Azalea  

At the top of the long grade,
through the rhododendrons and flame azalea

abloom in a bower,
I arrive at Grandmother’s side, yet once more.
“Depend on me,” she has been calling, 

from many miles away.
I step nearer. Tears fall.
Not another soul appears, here where crowds have been.
I circumambulate Her, dragons in the air,
Star magnolias blooming. 

I am here, I am here with Her.

At my little campsite, not a soul.
I fill my bottles with icy water and eat my lunch.
Not a soul but a big brown beetle in the bath.

I travel on to the church of the Lady,
Our Lady of the Hills, 

and am blessed with the talk of the gardener,
the magenta blooms of rhododendron so high,
encircling the bell tower, chiming on “one.”
Inside, quiet, lights and candles, and it’s Spring!
On the kneeling pads, at the pulpit,
lily-of-the-valley, iris, rhododendron, phlox.
Our Lady’s church blooming inside and out.
She gives me Her shy glance, holding the child,
and She is saying, “from pain blooms love.”

And finally here, by my son’s bones
mockingbirds raucous with things to say twitter all around.
I leave Bridgid’s cross, an offering to the trees.
My toes revel in the sweetness of wild strawberries.
The cattle are out on the sacred mound, 

under the apple tree,
new calves scampering to be with their moms.
Sweet the sun burns the scent into my being.
The flame azalea, bent by winter’s fierce storms,
reaches out to me in all shades of opening.
“Keep growing, Annelinde!”, they call. 

“There is still more.”

Annelinde Metzner

Grandmother Mountain
May 25, 2011

Every year, I return to Grandmother Mountain, near Blowing Rock, where I remember my son.  This poem is in my chapbook, "This Most Huge Yes," available in the "Buy" tab.

St. Mary of the Hills

Sunday, May 25, 2014


Mountain Laurel


Midsummer sun on raspberry,
the spiced scent of fern, the color of red clover.
There is no better place, 

no holier ground than this.
And what is near you? 

What grows by your door?
How you longed to be here, 

those nine months in the quiet room,
all suspense and expectancy, 

a few noises and bumps.
Your first aroma, new to breathe air, 

was luscious as this:
raspberry, fern, Mother’s blood, 

her milk, her musky skin.
The vision came and went as you gazed.
Here today, 

it’s new green berries tight as Chinese soldiers,
apple leaves against July’s blue,
and darker in the shade, 

the mysterious abyss.
That first day, Mother’s soft face came and went,
and each gaze another joy,
a bit of the immense puzzle 

you came just to experience.
With hunger and thirst, with tongue and lips,
our loudest “yes!” we sing.
Draw to your heart the new life, 

the new places of each day!
Draw into your soul the warm flesh of being, 

her musky skin, her colors.
She is not going to disappoint you.

Annelinde Metzner
July 10, 1995



Friday, May 16, 2014

It's May!

Native flame azalea

It’s May!   How much more
     can crowd into my senses,
     this morning, this bright morning, so green?
A chickadee, dressed sharp in black and white
     flies up and hovers near.
Each leaf, so tender and green,
     flutters, flutters in the cool breeze,
     sharing its tenderness with everyone.
It’s May!  The Goddess is here,
     the world relaxes, just a bit,
     we step where violets and clover bloom,
     our Mother cradling us.
We swim in the soft warm air.
We flutter our tender leaves,
     unafraid in the world.
It’s May!  We swim in the newest of Green,
     unafraid, alive again, loving this world,
     new, soft, tender, green,
     and fluttering in each new breeze.

Annelinde Metzner
May 16, 2014

Mountain Laurel


Dwarf Iris

Friday, May 2, 2014

Grateful for the thawing of the world!

New green leaves of Spring

Grateful for the thawing of the world!
Perched on a stone, two little brooks encircle me
     as I remember how to bask in the sun.
I am still, so still.
At my feet, the sparkles of mica and fool’s gold.
The purple-blue butterflies, Spring Azure,
     tiny and new,
     settle onto my bare feet to sample my taste.
How curious they are, of me,
     we strange creatures
     with shoes and clothes, bright colors!
I must be delicious, for they linger long.
The tiniest violet, yellow, courageous,
     springs up between stones on this April day.
The waterfalls tumble, step after step,
     no stone escaping the wearing-away
     of water’s relentless descent.
The sound engulfs me,
     overwhelms me, enchants me.
The sun warms my spine,
     the new Galax shines back.
I splash my face with the blessing of Water.
Fall to me, fall to me,
     icy Spring water of life!

Annelinde Metzner

April 11, 2014

Spring Azure butterfly