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Harvest: poems by Mark Weinrich

Updated: Sep 26, 2022

Harvest Sunset, photo by Mark Weinrich


Cotton dust hovers

in the west Texas sky.

Dust that sparks and flares,

igniting windows of coals,

glowing embers

so mesmerizing and warm,

I want to hold out my hands.

For I expect the flickering pop,

the comfort and fellowship

where I can find myself

by looking in.

For I know

this burning majesty

created in

and through dust

is only a reflection

of what the Lord

wants to radiate

through me.



Galaxies of dew-stars

twinkle across the meadow.

Butterflies bask

flashing bronze and gold

soaking in every particle

of warmth for their daily flight.

The whispered hum of bees

mining sweetness reaches me.

But like the butterflies

I still bear the heaviness

of the morning’s chill.

Finally, a swallowtail shivers

with excitement sipping nectar

from an iris. It reminds me

of a boy dancing at the front door

coat half on and off, “It’s Spring.

I can’t, I can’t stay inside.”

And like the boy and butterfly

I find the grace of this new day,




When I was declared in remission

parts of my body had forgotten

I was alive.

Effectively I’d taken a chemo trip

and part of my luggage was lost somewhere.

I’ve heard of amputees and phantom pain,

when a missing limb feigns it is still there.

For pity’s sake, I had everything, minus

some hair, why couldn’t my hands,

taste, and smell, tell me they are there?

Early one morning, two months later,

I stumbled into the kitchen

my wife had just ripped open

a yogurt cup. Something fruity

like strawberry or raspberry

exploded into the air.

Instantly this upspring from

within like the gentle thunder

of geese leaping from the water,

like a fountain of ecstatic

memories, our wedding day,

the births of our children

all fragranced together.

I was swept up in gratitude

and tears of joy.

If sifting life’s seconds is possible

I know now, eight years later,

I smelled the sun rise.



Seals and Crofts were rising with “The King of Nothing.”

Dad declared I had descended with that king.

My collar had met my hair and I was sentenced

to the front yard teaching myself guitar.

There was too much spiritual edge for playing

in the house; a storm front, where my father

found my life an irritation.

I played into the night after work as a nursing aide

I caressed the strings under the streetlight globe.

I lowered my voice to blend. And someone

else took over, crying and rejoicing

from the inside out. Had I split my skin,

and somehow crawled within?

There was this joyous ambrosia, a tenderness of soul,

a refuge where my mind was sowed

and virtual flowers rose like daffodils breaking snow.

I practiced room to nursing home room

discovering the gospel songs that bore time-traveling

fruit. I was astonished at the tears and gratitude.

Forty years later, Dad was dying in a nursing home.

Parkinson’s was having its way with him.

Bouts of rage were frequent. The storms

calmed when my wife and I sat beside him.

My fingers flowed, I closed my eyes and sang

to the Lord for him. I prayed God’s Spirit

would pierce the shroud of disease and reveal His grace.

And the lessons I’d learned under that dome of light

carried us away.


Mark Weinrich is a gardener, hiker, musician, cancer survivor, and retired pastor.  His work has been published in numerous literary and inspirational magazines. He has also sold eight children’s books and currently has two fantasy novels on Kindle.

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