By Ann Stanford
A summer without passion
our selves pulled together
like the leaves surrounding the branches
each branch part of the tree
the tree round, holding its own in the air.
round globes of sound
weld it together
it balloons in the night
circles the amphitheater
whole and separate
as the star that winks at the proceeding.
the bear in the globe
of a child’s toy
shaken, a blizzard
inside the water in the ball.
through the long summer
without anger, without joy, with no surprise.
Now in August the leaves begin to turn
walnuts—black globes—rattle the eaves.
and brambles conquer the garden
one day comes a clear draft from the north
and the sky goes blue once more.
in the green chemical light
waiting for waking
to shake us—birds in the cat’s mouth—
or fall back numb again
among the chill, murdered, murdering leaves.