If you lean too hard, you’ll go tumbling out of shadows, into the lake. Look, like how the leaves strain against their cuffs in the wind, leaning into the goldenrod breeze. Look at the lovers lean into each other, racing against sundown, lips brushing freckles, freckles brushing blades tickling toes.
Soon comes spring; and children will sigh in the rhododendron light. Forty days, the land groaned under the burden of frost and dust. I think to myself that were we to drink the ashen calendar days, we could not bear the surprise of heart-sick laughter, the lightness best experienced with others; a choked-up kind of glee that pounces suddenly without explanation. Does a bird think to itself, thankgodi’malivethankgodi’malive? I have a suspicion the children know; they have watched and waited for the light. Soon we, too, shall awaken.