: a yesterday like this, mild

: a warm unknown this north, this late

: a smell like Iowa’s autumn days, musky
dying smell of sweet, rich dust

: the urge behind my picking up old washers,
rusted bolts, and metals’ other faded colors in feathers

: a place I didn’t even know existed
until this summer, when the sculptor brought me here, this grove
a chapel of light then, green

: a sense she is somewhere behind me, measuring the grass

: the work of a bird, unaware, it seems

: of the river, the opposite bank

: where something has scared the leaves—
they’re up and away—

: the tree above me still with its seeds,
its branches dragging the water


Blue rose of a shirt crumpled,
the neck with two wrists
asleep in its scent. After rain,
I’d like no needs to wake.

But weeds in the dying man’s garden
wait. The bee to be dethroned again.
Onions tangle like suspicion, slowly
with their rotting arms.

And the only fire is the sun
some nights. It goes dutiful
as a child might. Now go,
and leave the door closed this time