Heart grown gray, heart/tressed with care: tell me why/the bowl never seems to fill…/though I’ve poured all the sweet/water I could find, countless trips/through the years—


By the time I fill up to the brim,
I ‘d have coughed up sediments
of crushed stones, jagged pebbles
and the craw-sticking bone chips
that remain from downstream
sieving for the one golden nugget
that was never there. I thirst still.

But the summers of our pine city
refuge have come and gone, too,
with our windy spaces, now left
as frozen wind tunnels when you
abandoned the cone-strewn trails
for your will-o’-the-wisp: a full
bowl of nectar laced with laughter.

—Albert B. Casuga