Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

Variations on a Cemetery in Summer

Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

Variations on a Cemetery in Summer

Article excerpt

An ant travels across

time and up my leg and I let

her. If bitten, I'll remember

in the middle of the night the songs

they mean to busy themselves

with each antenna-bright industry.

Say of the bees that they offer us

more sugar than sting-

The dead love the scent

of flowers in summer, the soft

fog of their last lives embrace

the waists of trees, relax

into green moss, infinite

spiral of infinite spiral.

I love the mouth-punctured

leaves best always. Tonight

I'll rock back and forth

on my porch beside death,

stitch lapfuls with her

into a sun-blessed lace dress.

The world, the world, the whirl-

I press my lips to moss,

to kiss until I too grow

branches too strong to be jostled. …

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