Cycle of Summer


THE slow routine of peace begins with dawn,
The clatter of a truck, a first bird call
Breaking the ordered silences of dark —
Familiar things, habitual and small.
As mind drifts back from cloudy wells of sleep,
The eye perceives time’s record on the blinds
In bands of gold. The mirror floats in light,
Within the room the web of day unwinds.


In this bright fixative of heat, the eyes
See a land moulded in a globe of glass,
Muted in strange expectancy that lies
On distant hills and in the tongues of grass.
No wind disturbs the ranks of fern that crowd
About the pond in this ephemeral hour.
The lily moors her whiteness to a cloud,
The sun sucks fiercely at the drooping flower.
Half-raised above the amber water brink,
A frog sits motionless, his bronze-green back
Merged with the weeds. A thrush drops down to drink,
The spider watches from her cul-de-sac.


The hot, dry sounds of day are mute,
Close-furled, the lily lies at rest,
The frog still pipes his rusty flute,
A pale moon tops the wooded crest.
Unknowing, she looks down upon
The dark penumbra of our home,
And fragrance clean as cinnamon
Drifts from the meadow, freshly mown.
As water cupped within the hand,
The valley gathers pools of light,
We walk an unfamiliar land
Charged with the mystery of night;
Till silence tightens at our hearts,
So close to something all but heard . . .
The moment fades, the clue departs,
Only the wind brings word.