Birch Symphony

Her twigs whistle softly
Woodwinds not yet silenced
Still merry with seasonal change

Rustling leaves offer a hint of song
High notes and low ones
Orchestrated by the wind

Clever of the skies
To solicit mid-air composition
A subtle gift to my ears

Music for the heavens
And those who fly high
Above swooning branches

Melodies that dance forever
Join tiny voices of sparrows
And rouse cackling blackbirds

She gently touches her cloak
Slowly, then with vigor, she
Plunges through each chord

Mighty wind at her back
A gust arrives in D Minor
Blows her instrument awry

Her tempo changes,
Each prelude starts anew
A scorching endless song

Percussion at the ready
Clashing arms mere zest
To flute-like singing bees

That hum, dance and
Swirl to the sound
Of life in the making

Her symphony foretells
Desire, yet alas, quiet
When winter will silence her song

—Victoria Emmons, 2018

Wente Concert Summer 2009

Palm trees wave at dusk
Blue backdrop to the stage
Backdrop to my memory
Of hits from the 70s

Graying heads bob
In rhythm to the music
Songs behind our minds
From a former time

A single lighter flame
Waves back and forth
Keeping time with
Familiar melodies

Others follow the lead
Of a digital flame
A sea of mechanical fire
Erupts in unison

Cheese on our knees
Share a Cabernet
Stars in the sky
Planes fly to SFO

The crowd is relaxed
So easy and free
Nothing less than
A three-song curtain call

Claps and whistles abound
An old man wearing a hat
Dances with a slender blond
The night’s still young

–Victoria Emmons, 2014