Niagara November 1978 by Daniel Brown

Niagara, 1857 by Frederic Edwin Church.Image courtesy of the National Gallery of Art
Niagara, 1857 by Frederic Edwin Church
Image courtesy of the National Gallery of Art

After Thanksgiving dinner in North Tonawanda
We drove to Niagara through chilly evening fog,
parked and walked carefully toward the falls.
The sidewalks and grounds were frosted lace,
along the path branches of flash frozen trees 
had spent blossoms suspended like icicle earrings.
Although we remembered 4th grade science
and the hydraulic water cycle
we forgot to realize that when they melt
the radiant ice diamonds 
will mingle with human breath
mist their way to heaven
before returning to earth 
in never ending rotation
to churn and crash over the falls
as they had for Frederic Edwin Church in 1857
when his breath and artistic vision 
captured and contributed to the movement 
of the eternal roar.

daniel brown
Daniel Brown

This poem, inspired by Frederic Edwin Church’s 1857 painting Niagara, was first published in The Ekphrastic ReviewOctober 20, 2023 in their Ekphrastic Challenges series. Read about ekphrastic poetry in Niagara.

Daniel Brown has recently published at age 72 his first collection Family Portraits in Verse and Other Illustrated Poems through Epigraph Books, Rhinebeck, NY. He has most recently been published in Jerry Jazz Musician and Chronogram Magazine and was included in Arts Mid-Hudson 2023 gallery presentation Poets Respond To Art in Poughkeepsie, NY.

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