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Solstice

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Glass moon sliver dangles on a thread
above the hill we climbed.
These summer evenings
the light burns orange,
then is still.

I am in good company.
Up the path, tree-branches on little feet follow the crowd
in mystic mischief; expectant eyes beholding
goblets of drunken laughter, like caresses
slipping sound round my professor’s pithy
turns around

ideas of eternity and
the boeuf en daube we ate for dinner,
or the softness of these woods’ wood – good for bonfires –
and the handfuls of thyme on this path to steal
and to conspire about, and to stash into purses
before the last light slips up the poplars’ piney fingers
and we must walk down.

In the dusk the green leaves’ laughing bells
in the dark become silhouettes of themselves
making food from their memories of light.

And so we,
without clocks to see walk back unspeaking under
each our own remembered web of smiling stars.
until stopping at the harsh gleam of
headlights – good for midnight driving –
little footsteps halt to hear
rumor that henceforth the year is getting darker.

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