The Works of Donald Winters

Donald Winters is a retired humanities professor from Minneapolis Community College where he taught English, Humanities and creative
writing. He received a doctorate in American Studies from the University of Minnesota, a Masters in English from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor's Degree from California State University, Long Beach. His poetry has been published in Beyond BaroqueThe Worcester Review and numerous college publications.

All Poems © Donald Winters

Dreams

Old dreams serve as well as new.
When recollected in tranquility,
The rain seems as
Sweetly strange from years back
As this morning's soaking song.

The tongue that flickers in my ear
Like a bewildered butterfly
Speaks soft syllables as love currents flow.
And no matter how swift its path
It leaves an aching, desperate joy.

Fingers feeling for yielding flesh
Are like mysterious creatures in the night
Seeking a spot for rest or dreams,
Testing each soft and softer place
For immeasurable pleasure or solace.

When waking from such a dream
Who could ever guess the time?
Or even ask if it were real or
Gleaned from some furious fragment
Of a sensual fusion or fantasy?

Dreams drenched in passion
Whether from visions nearly forgotten
Or timely tales still fresh from telling
Form the never-ending frames
Of our nocturnal portraits.


HEMINGWAY'S KEY WEST FIRE SERMON

Hear me well, poetry boys,
You feel, dream and fantasize
Entirely too goddam much.

Ever try resting
Your throbbing head
On a soft dream after
A three-day drunk with Ezra Pound?

When has a feeling ever
Picked up the tab at Sloppy Joe's?
Or a fantasy fanned your burning flesh
On an African plain?

Listen to the screech
Of a Key West parrot
Or followed the path of a six-toed cat.
That's the stuff that real life is made of
Not half-assed dreams or visions.

A bottle of whiskey
And the cool barrel of a shotgun,
Both are solid and prosaic in the mouth,
One offering drunken life
The other, the Endgame.

Both are far from fantasy,
Both offer experiences to have
And to have not.
Heroes know when it's time for one
And then time for the other.