Lists--III

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BOOKS JULY 15, 2009

Lists--III

The date's a sentence that can be parsed: pattern,

symmetry, sequence. Can I parse the sky this

morning, its complex syntax of cirrocumulus

suggestions? The sunlight's breaking, broken.

Light on the hills is thinner than yesterday's

illumination. The flooding creek is still out of

its banks, but lower. An impulse to measure,

mark: the river the rain the times of sunrise

sunset. I don't know how to take in the fact

that we are at war: overreaching, aggressor,

outlaw. In the garden snowdrops and trash,

hyacinth heads pushing up like green tops of

wooden newels, elaborately carved. Bleeding

heart, rhubarb are purple and red punctuation:

commas, parentheses, stops. Day is a sharp

break from dream, a door shutting. If I had

to invent what I dreamt, I'd say mothering

and the Antipodes. April's forecast is rain,

surges of heat and cold: weather tempered

to my own. I know what I'm ignoring, what

I don't want to know. I'm appalled, ashamed.

Spring doesn't give a damn. Overnight robins

arrive, fat and bold and omnipresent. Lilac,

dogwood in bud, crocus blooming, the shell-

shaped leaves of columbine splay out over

moldy oak leaves, dead grass. Under the

stalks of last year's sedum, this year's leaves

are curled, tight green cabbage roses,

potent, oblivious.

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