Nine Holes Near Krakow

Nine holes near Krakow,
laid out in the countryside
like soft pieces of cloth,
far away from the hustle & bustle of
the Rynek Glowny,
a quiet gift of barely rustling
grass, trees and sunlight,
filled with no-one but
the sleepy golf-pro and
the talkative young cab driver
who drove you to this
Nirvana-like place
in the little village of Ochmanow,
nine holes of the sweetest
solitude as you trudge from
shot to shot, up steep hills
and down the backsides of
others, following the swoops
and curves like a map of your life,
contemplating each shot
like a poem, or a lover’s sigh,
surrounded by gorgeous
farmland, red-tile roofed houses,
and occasional distant puffs of
chimney smoke, you swing
and feel in harmony with
the earth and the birds cawin
“dzien dobry” (good morning)
overhead, while the groundskeeper
mows the fairway grass at a steady
humming pace, you look at
the clouds and the horizon
and think of your family
and wish you could share this
magnificent inner moment
when time stands still
and it’s just you and the ball
in a manicured Garden of Eden,
thankful for all you have
and hoping you can pass on
this passion for a sport
and the outdoors to your
sons, so they, too, can
feel the joy of one-ness
in places like this,
where Kings once hunted
and deer roam free, baffled
by the man who smiles
and stares at the ever-lightening sky.