melange is not to say
I follow lengthwise
what you modify
(distinct from mollify)

the embers are a part of this
detention, how mature
am I becoming, rainwear
chastens as we draw

supple conclusions with
humidity, my teacher
is a bookmark, my level
of recall ensnares

weights and measures,
sacrifice, untimely take-home
prana in foresaken templates


would this qualify 
to be a Tuesday
others very much at home
tranquil themselves

a steadiness impinges on
the threadbare applications
of a moth, forebears
raffle off our legacy

I thought I was in love
the body trades on 
limberwear, the host plant
traces impulse richly

and for starters every lamp
available became the province
of a household over which
we had no say, were migratory first


all it takes to shore
up replicatable
finesse is one trimester's
worth of savvy

to be told and taught
a momentary willingness
in retrospect elicits sorrow
I overdose on empathy

the bones of birds
a man whom I especially respect
the opposite of carefree,
semblances elicit

meditation on recurrence,
in effect the same
core mention happily
repeated and reset for recollection


enhance, as dance is (does)
even the rafters where all
(wherewithal) the conversation
chances focus, natural

uplift or tiger lily
(not in the desert)
instead "those lovely little
pinks that keep replenishing"

for baskets, minefields
far from here in mind
hearing the birds and watching
in between identification

dragonfly, although the water
is from sprinklers
and the creek (nothing to fear,
no worries, all is here)


we sit together
near enough the woodpecker
and birds tip wings
as they go by

topics go by "there goes Joan . . .
off for the day,"
these broad leaves should be
grapes ("interdependent,

my dearest"), what is it
about log cabins and creatures
offering "a virtual air show."
fireflies and butterflies

all these
trinities (robins, also
attracted to the mountain climes)
spiders spinning webs we have already seen


glistening, so pretty "if
you look closely you will see
the spiders" (any day now)
some things shine when left

alone, you comment
on the watering, the stream
rinsing the stones, 
respectful people here with books

myself with pen
the way I wanted
"so beautifully planned, and yet
you never see anyone here fussing"

a single hour exceeds
the value of a calendar
year, I see someone I know,
this often multiples


everything, so carefully
placed, the love that has gone
into each small feature
(woodpecker can be amazingly

big, the night light's
patina (you're so beautiful
when you watch), which itself
is scenery, the stones places

"wonder where her hatred came from . . .
maybe people just find it"
"truly a soft breeze, isn't it?"
this conversation, where to sit

their family started this,
an enhancement on what was
already here, an intelligent
preservation, love milks from itself new love


all afternoon I did not hear
the traffic noise,
and now a white truck
needing to be bathed

will have the rain, my eyelids
and the mountain,
and the grape leaves and
the treated logs that keep out

heat and cold, your yellow
shirt, a bright antithesis,
comes come we carry
with us, lives

with roots so recognizable,
instantaneously glowing,
often we go away a little while
to be just here (amounts to anywhere)


someone banjos through
humidity's danced
shoulders in sequential green
line dance this afternoon

apart from instinct
to form home I do not
whittle, graze, or pray
to ether, I just let

this equal this and that
become discovered
serendipitously mask
the referendum surely

couched in conch
so fingers learn to play
the many tradeoffs
scales, arpeggios, a random melody


to declare that I have built
this, then to be able to move on
from there, unchallenged . . .
a bareboned replica of flight ceased midair

resonates as simply
as binoculars or feeder towns
that fan the flame of customers
make life go on legato for awhile

not having lived here any
length of time, tiring to know
people even west of here,
a conversation is in some sense

an investment or expenditure,
which form of halting is
preferred, you work on
probability, continually reaffirm its light in me

Volume Three Index
The East Village Poetry Web
Sheila Murphy