Zona Rowand Lawrence, was born in West Virginia, USA. The family moved to Phoenix Arizona when she was eight. At Sixteen Zona sang her first leading role in an operetta and spent the next 50 years on stage and teaching both piano and voice. When she retired from the stage she went back to school to study writing and has been working in many genres since that time. Her poem, Indiscriminate Sestina, won twenty thousand dollars in a poetry competition in 2004. She has published four books and her work appears in the Paradise Review.
THE ISLAND THAT TEMPTS ME
Lost in a sea of forgetfulness
dreaming of days gone by —
I wake to surf kissing the beach,
feel the sun of life stir my body.
I look around for where I am —
an Eden, Shangri-La, Xanadu.
Lush landscape fills my sight,
I smell rich odors of food and fruit.
I see people walking, smiling, happy —
no cars only bikes and horses,
electric golf carts on spindly paths
quiet, serenity, peacefulness.
My life is busy, fast-paced, noisy —
food from taco stands and such.
Phones, doorbells, a constant ringing
no time, no time, no time, no time.
But here, here on this island
there is nothing to pull me away,
nothing to assault my senses,
nothing to cause me pain.
How tempting to remain —
to live out my life here
where quiet joys fill my heart,
where I am once again alive,
as I have not been for years.
It’s a sin to be so tempted,
yet I waver — with my soul
in need of the still silent nights.
I’m lost in a sea of forgetfulness
dreaming of days gone by.
AT THE PARK
The empty bench, with an unfinished book,
isn’t the way it was supposed to be.
He sat there for hours reading the works
of Coward, Poe and then Keats.
The silence, but for the brook, was magical
in it’s serenity and splendor –
even the birds gave pass to a sound
so peaceful, so thoughtful and tender.
And he, in his reverie never knew
He’d gone away from this peace of the soul —
for where he went the angels chorused, and
there he became a part of the whole.
The book, never finished, lay sadly alone —
the grass and the trees lived on in time.
The bench waited with open boards
for others to sit and read or climb.
Poets and painters find their muses
where many stories have lived and played –
on the empty bench, with an unfinished book,
that wasn’t supposed to be there, but stayed.