damn the broken speckled eggs of sorrow
lambs and sheep are counted for tomorrow
harm unfolds and every corners’ ornery
trapped in tattered rags of second stories
charmed until the pansies drooped neglected
snapped balloons deflated dreams deflected
skeins of winter sunlight wheezed and squandered
promises that shattered pieced and pondered
trains of thought to marriage quite contrary
Thomases of doubt reactionary
coroners and caskets flying solo
kettle drums that wanted to be oboes
corridors of numbered doors and angles
settled in complacency’s soft strangle
Ginger and cinnamon can scar
the reserved air mercilessly
in empty rooms at half past three.
Perky utensils cramp a jar,
spatulas arranged as they are
needed. Laundered dishcloths still smell
of distant breads, a rump roast’s char.
Her kitchen wouldn’t say farewell.
Spring blooms: Cutleaf Rootwart, Green Adder’s Mouth, Duck Potato;
stump me. I am lost in protuberance or sashaying creature;
a forest of thought is absent; I will name my own illusions.
The knockout was delivered Christmas day;
a brawl was done that passed just like a dream.
Your final bout had ended up this way:
against the ropes and losing all your steam.
Though facing your opponent toe to toe,
the sucker-punch already had been thrown.
You found yourself down fallen, like the snow;
a ten-count wouldn’t stop or be postponed.
Your gloves came off when fighting this last round.
The winter cancer boxed you in the ring
and grew so fast, despite the frozen ground.
Those pounds you lost left featherweight to swing.
Some boxers are considered tough and brave,
but you swung lionhearted at a grave.
You broke a bale and scattered August on
the frozen stable boards. December sagged,
her arching tail switched steadily at dawn.
We waited, talked of heifers, fogged and flagged
the conversation cleverly around
a frigid barn. December didn’t care,
she raised her head, was bearing down,
preoccupied with something in the air.
She pushed until we saw two hoofs appear;
the long gestation ruptured, braved the chill
and steaming, slipped into the atmosphere.
December stood and letting down her milk,
wasted streams of warmth around her feet.
We watched until our silence stretched like hands
through polar fronts and taciturn cool sheets.
The moon fell down, the newborn tried to stand,
but vapor veiled our faces as we laughed
together at December’s wobbly calf.
Now trees don’t cast their shade, it follows me
and yellows light to fenced anemic hue.
The crooning brook, a dull menagerie:
discordant scales or fish beneath that blue
once fasinated me. Instead, I look
away and focus carefully on dim
horizons, leave the mayfly on the hook,
descending, dive for shadowed cool to swim.
Though still I wonder, what of paths untried;
the splash that I’ve kept thirsty in a dream.
The angled light viewed from the other side,
those might-have-beens that never may be seen.
A transient color stalks the fragile hour,
then quietly it occupies each flower.