At dusk, the grandmother sits alone
in the light of the long pale pool and speaks
to the frog who is waiting
by the electric gate of the clubhouse.

It will be all right, she says, leaning out
from her chair. Her voice

is churning, and old, and wet
with advice. Her newly red hair
purples under the bug light. It will be
all right, she says, again, and again

the sky rolls in and out on its journey
across the peninsula, rattling the palms.

To the Quarry and Back

White hail pelting the frozen bog,
I’ m stuck in the first line of January,
following my host’ s dog
on his walk through the stone century,
around the quarry, slices of marble and mud,
past a herd of miners exhaling smoke,
past a barn smelling of merde,
and back to where I’ m stuck and broke.
The fucking dog barks at the night,
mad at the stars all his life and then again.
I rethink kicking him out,
but being cool, I let him in.

Northern Exposures

You hear the roadhouse before you see it,
Its four-beat country tunes
Amplified like surf through the woods,
Silencing bullfrog and red-tailed hawk,
Setting beards of moss dancing
On dim, indeterminate trees
That border two-lane blacktop.
Docked tonight, you reveal the badge
Of the farmer, that blanched expanse of skin
Where cap shades face, babyhood

from Spring Psalter

Darling, I leave you the forever unblooming
twig half-sunk in spring mud & the Nature that allows
such delicate & lasting atrocity.

Darling, darling, darling: my voice is a branch that would reach.

I leave you the ragged sky, once full of cloud & now
not. I leave you these things just as I leave

you: graceful passage from one something to the next.
Darling, even in this my voice dissipates


Ever let the Fancy roam,
Pleasure never is at home:
At a touch sweet Pleasure melteth,
Like to bubbles when rain pelteth;
Then let winged Fancy wander
Through the thought still spread beyond her:
Open wide the mind's cage-door,
She'll dart forth, and cloudward soar.
O sweet Fancy! let her loose;
Summer's joys are spoilt by use,
And the enjoying of the Spring
Fades as does its blossoming;
Autumn's red-lipp'd fruitage too,
Blushing through the mist and dew,
Cloys with tasting: What do then?