|clematis in the morning|
by Barbara Crooker
For who has despised the day of small things?
It's just a day when dusty sycamore leaves
flash silver as they scull in the wind,
when high clouds journey across the sky,
huge white blossoms going to seed.
It's summer, and the world exhales its green breath.
For once, the humidity machine's been shut off,
and the air feels like a lover's caress.
My grouchy white cat stalks through the high grass,
twines once around my legs, then sits nearby,
as close as he's ever going to get. A spider
casts her filaments on a frond of Russian sage,
finches go to work on the sunflower heads,
nodding and bobbing. In the meadow, the traffic of ants and bees . . . .
The sun, no longer last week's red hot griddle,
casts us in a bronzy light, turns the air to syrup.
I neither want to be here, nor there. The afternoon
grows radiant around the edges. Dinner on the porch,
a thick steak, matchstick asparagus, many-grained bread.
A wedge of chocolate cake, cut in two, a handful
of raspberries. Arid, in the twilight, swallows scissor
the air over the orchard, cutting scraps in the cloth of light,
as we sip the last few mouthfuls of wine,
the small pleasures of the night, the amplitude of the day.
|stella de oro daylilies|