Writing, after heavy spring rain

These are markers on the dial of the seasons:

Armloads of winter wood & hours

beside the kumquat coals

of the parlour stove;

buckets of ash that leach sweetness –

noxious to potato, blueberry & rhododendron –

into this valley, this sink into swamp;

an apple tree pulled by a rose to earth

in a quagmire of leaf-mould, rose wand & re-rooted thorn;

effervescent pink & violet in blackberry, rose, birch & alder;

& the freak of a squirrel in the barn at the dog’s entry.


Stream, chickadee, sparrow & crow improvise a chord –

a gradation of joy in overlapping sound – noted

on the screen that is this cloister’s window.