With the leaves gone
a pageantry departs
all pretense of grooming
as only the dead
are so transparent.

When I walk in them
a grove like bones
the sun makes clear lines.
I tend to think
in lifespans.

They overlap, the patterns
only seen from above
when the summer woods
are full of noisy green
rooms. But through

these colder limbs
a circular truth
doesn’t need explaining,
warmed by the razor-blue
of shorter days.



Brief Country

From overhead see
horses run across the newer ridge
where old houses strain under
strokes of raining.
Still this drone-view moves through
weather fleeting like the pain
of prior lives.

On the rise a girl sings
almost out of hearing, selective
as to notes and words selective
as to meaning allowed to carry
over wet air too slow to catch
in a sky-road too fast to hold
above this brief country.

But standing-back peels
an onion, probes the veil of those
small places, paints horizons with
a name that trades the nearness of you
for pointillism far removed
from iota, begging the question
of how far back to stand.