The Good Life

Ah at the end of the day, to sleep
the sleep of the just
, my elders would intone—
The just what? I wanted to know, impatient girl

wanting to hurtle into the rest of my life, little knowing
how unprepared I was. Once, I burned to follow in the trail
of rash desire, leave the gleaning and the gathering,

the industry that marches, single file, from field to hive;
to slip away into the orchard where the grasshopper pulled
on the bow, pushed the slats of apple crates aside

and tapped out some sweet tune—
Oh my soul, how I want to lie beggar-like
on the grass, under the waning stars, surrounded

by the fragrance of shriveled peel and cast-off husks.
You fill my vaults with stubborn hope that there is more,
though only so much to be earned and spent.

 

In response to Via Negativa: The Good Life.

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