by Diana Whitney
Voluptuous June unbuttons her petticoat
shakes out her tresses, rains velvet petals
on besotted grass. You stumble and fall
through the open doorway. Cross the threshold
of late afternoon, creamy locust blossoms
like mythic grapes suspended in half-light,
nourished in shadow, the sun and its twin
never separate for long. You slip and fall
through June’s open doorway, her bodice
unlaced, her skirts disheveled, clouds of pollen
wreathing her hair. Your hands are everywhere
the light is. She softens like pasture
under your touch. Three horses wade in a river
of buttercups: two white geldings, one dark mare,
hides slicked down in fragrant rain, munching
stems and golden flowers, cherishing the space
around their bodies, aware of their parallel, ceaseless
appetites, how generous June can satisfy all.
The bred cow slowly tongues the salt-lick, patient,
steady, savoring minerals, her whole body craving
what she lacks: iron, sodium, phosphorous, zinc.
How seamlessly June builds bone and tissue.
She loosens her girdle and peonies open, nebulas
of pollen in ambrosial silks, singles, doubles, pinks
and scarlets, armloads of peonies hallowed by rain.
You slip through the open doorway again
where the stream in the hollow is rushing,
laughing. Water moves over stones and our hands
are the stones and our words are the water
tumbling stones. You murmur
songs in a forgotten tongue, stroke the hidden
star at the center of the apple,
all the old resolutions undone.