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So warm, the hedges almost bloom, though the jagged skeletons
of fake, electric icicles are twined along a front-yard chain-link fence.
In the windows, faded Steelers signs, tribal gear still out
although the season’s done. Lazy, from the playground, comes
the pock…pock…pock and thunk of basketball. And on the bus today,
a man, almost theatrical, in calf-high boots and cape, was reading
a garden book: bright pink and purple squares – laurels, rhododendrons –
species being forced beyond this climate zone. Yet for us, it’s
this kiss of almost summer, fragrant with transience and sun.
It’s like magic: the air so breathy, we pretend
our leisurely earth is washing itself again. Though, in the end,
magic will not save us, cape and wand, rituals and signs, potions,
costly powders, tusks and bones, procured from tawdry
dealers in such things, shark fins, albino skin, rhinoceros horn.
From Each Perfected Name (Truman State). Copyright 2015 Richard St. John.