Clearing the garden

In the yard, the widest tree
is the heat that shimmers over all
at three in the afternoon. I walk

under its canopy and my presence
beacons every small biting thing—
they live in the shadow of the leaves,

and I am blood after all, and skin.
I am porous under my bindings. The light
of the sun, where it falls on the yellow

sides of the house, is blinding. I try
to remember how it looked when we
first stepped through the gate

not so long ago— The voice of a lone
goose beginning to carve the still
luxuriant air, the foliage just

gone bare. A few of summer’s last figs
tenacious on the topmost branches:
their dark and leathery offerings.

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