With a broken-down oven, in a hotel kitchen, on an uninhabited island
Subscribe and Save up to 45%
Morning: fire of purple princess blossoms,
toddler pedaling furiously on a tricycle,
and the man unlocking his fix-it shop on the corner
with its hand-painted warning sign:
All my stuff is not worth your life.
The last of winter’s rain
evaporates into fog,
and the dogwood sheds its fragrance: soft, delicious.
I’m building my nest, just like the chickadee,
the yellow-rumped warbler,
the dark-eyed junco,
out of whatever’s at hand —
you, as it turns out,
our clasped fingers and twinned gaits.
This terrifying tenderness.
Plus coffee, plus trillium and jasmine
and pink fuzz of flowering peach.
I’m scared to confess to happiness.
I know the jealous Fates in their dolorous Heaven,
how they love to feast on the heart.
I know they’ve already marked the spot
where one of us dies
and the other stands open-mouthed
and uncomprehending as dirt closes over our one song.
But for just this moment I want what I have. Love
quickens the air.
Witness that, O yellow-bellied sapsucker,
lazuli bunting, American robin.