Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Early Spring (After Horace) by Devin Johnston

The hardest of winters will crack
at the tap of spring and milder systems:
performance yachts
are winched from dry-dock storage;
chafed by confinement,
the amateur botanist hates his apartment,
and city parks no longer shine with frost.

Venus ascends through the elms
as the moon swings closer
and teens entwine
their fingers as they ramble,
sandals abandoned; a night-
shift employee waves her scanner,
restocking surge suppressors
of summer lightning.

Now is the time to relax
with a puff of grass to tangle thoughts
with flowers, which float
above the thawing earth.
On the shadowy paths
of the graveyard, it's time to burn
some useless sacrifice to wildness.

Colorless death will descend
on Division's tattered kiosk
or Board of Trade, regardless.
You've been lucky, David:
hope for the future's restricted -
the longest of lives is short.
Night and half-remembered
forms are closing in -

a thin and emotionless heaven.
Within its walls,
no joke of yours will ripple
through the darkness
(lending a wonderful curl
to McPherson's lip, for whom
the boys now burn, and girls will soon catch fire).

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