Brandon Marlon "Two Poems"


Dragon's blood tree boughs stretch upwards

from a grove in the limestone plain, well within

view of red granite peaks whitened by lichen

and towering above snails, beetles, lizards,

and freshwater crabs, endemic denizens

of an archipelago isolated in space and time.

While monsoon winds reshape dunes,

islanders trudge past the fuchsia desert rose

whose rotund trunk belies its toxic bark,

strips of which are claimed by goatherds keen

to spare their kids from feral marauders.

Locals afoot beneath highland mists come

to harvest croton shrubs for medicinal properties

and gnarled frankincense trees for aromatic resins.

The alertest survey the vista, glimpsing among seabirds

a maternal kestrel bearing grub to nestlings

huddled in a recess along the steep cliff.

To outsiders these isles seem remote and harsh,

a landscape uninviting; unbeknownst to them,

the habitat once legendary and at the world's edge

teems with nature's variations, a panoply of riches

expressing the diversity of that chameleon, life.


Also the Land Will I Remember

A wreath of beams illumes the auroral hour

when the wolf dozes but the falcon, sentineling and peckish,

espies its repaste scudding far below unknowingly in vain.

Necklaced lakes reflect the light to keep it

from penetrating to the depths of their secrets

accumulated as sediment, the aggregate of generations.

The seasonable breeze tickles petals of every

texture, contour, and tint amid a florescence

ornamenting with loveliness the valleys.

Along the undulating vertebrae of peaks mortals

trek and wend, clambering to oversee vistas,

learning the land, sifting dirt hot in pursuit of roots.

They scan the horizon then probe the heavens

seeking insights scarcer than grapes in the wilderness,

inspirited to uphold their duty as legatees.


Brandon Marlon is a writer from Ottawa, Canada. He received his B.A. in Drama & English from the University of Toronto and his M.A. in English from the University of Victoria. His poetry was awarded the Harry Hoyt Lacey Prize in Poetry (Fall 2015), and his writing has been published in 300 publications in 30 countries.