High in the swamp maple, too far
for shouldering raccoon, a nest
of sticks and grasses. I imagine
bone and hide there too, debris
of living by necessity. High
enough for a Redtail to scan
the pasture, beak and talon poised,
high enough to search the sky
above cropped fields and summer cattle,
where a bird can wheel for joy.

But her foot taps the pedestal
of the table, and she nods, eyes
hooded. I call softly and they open.
She refuses, reluctant, closes them
again on wood and formica, the day
room, my visit. I like to think not sleep
but dance plays her mind’s eye, lifts
its theatre, reaches towards choreography
we love, stretches beyond, though time
and place sore circumscribed belie it.

Long Nights Moon

Christmas 2015

A ladder of cloud steps
up the valley casting linear
shadows on a bronze afternoon.
Still pale, a full moon follows.
Sparrows in flock descending the oak
in a shower of chittering, rinse off
the last autumn lint. Branches
shiver – the tree shelters
April deep in her wood.