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Paul Kocak
Poet
I work near Franklin Square, and in the warm weather I often eat lunch there. I seem to write haiku, or anything for that matter, in bursts. Call it haiku-binge-writing. During these times, my awareness is heightened, looking for small things that could serve as the focus of a poem.

Just seeing everything in that park on a beautiful spring day—it struck me. There’s a great sense of place at Franklin Square. It’s one of Syracuse’s unknown jewels. That day, I was caught by waves of startlingly red geraniums, offset by deep blue sky dotted with rolling cumulus clouds. The moving clouds created shadows.

Against the movement of clouds and swaying flowers stood the still and silent statue of the great Ben Franklin. But if you walk around the park, you’ll find that Mr. Franklin is not so silent, after all. One-liners—maxims, aphorisms—of his are tucked in secret places.

Cumulus clouds shade
Ben Franklin's stoic statue
Geraniums away

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