Nothing at dusk, lord, but dust and road to keep it. The ﬁeld kneels under white pines, umbra the edge to whom this is addressed : a mind part fern, part birch : two turkeys slowly S-ing their necks through inﬂorescence, arrangement more precise than what light leaves ﬁelds : painterly ﬂowers more color than picture, more words for color than tint : alizarin or violet, you could write goldenrod, write cornﬂower, but Queen Anne's lace still hems the low horizon. Faith, what is it abides, what's left of pastoral but unreality. Ask artiﬁce. Ask ornament. Go ahead and ask : what principle animates the natural : owl pink Lady's Slipper orchid white-tailed deer woodchuck : is it only what's visible that's knowable. Twenty dandelions gone to seed; tent worms slung in the articulated tree; what's tiresome : mind unanswered, writing to supply scaffolds to hold up scenery, nothing but queries and plywood, string strung to a high struck bell auguring : it's too late to see a third turkey left headless, wreck of feathers the owl scared, scattered in grass—
Separation is the necessary condition for light.
so it came to me to carry the abandoned mattress to the attic a month dead my father waited hillside in the field surrounding his house I was glad to see him to remember when the fathers seemed generic related a class of things as uniform as trees are when you don’t know their names a stand of them across the field I want to say autumn aspens the late fathers blonde as early evening wind startles their eyes and makes of your name a sail a boat above roots that rise to stem that rise to leaf his door and cornices his felt hat and mattress empty it feels like forever above the flickering field the fathers shrinking far beneath our feet
for Lisa Fishman