This entry is part 83 of 93 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Summer 2011


You want to know how many hours remain
on the fringed lilac faces of these clocks—

Oh take heart, unstrap your sandals, walk by
the shore, leaving the animal that’s lowered

its head to nuzzle wet sculpted sand. And then
come back to lay beneath the windowsill—

You’ll hear the honeybee still sharpening
its rhetoric, the far-off notes made

by bodies nested in burr and fiddlehead fern.
The latch of the gate falls close at evening’s

approach. Its brassy little sound bursts
like a small blue blossom puncturing the dark.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← Landscape, with Things Falling from the SkyMobius →

3 Replies to “Asters”

  1. I love the language here, especially the honeybee sharpening her rhetoric. It does seem a little odd to encounter fiddleheads in a poem entitled “Asters,” though I suppose you have your reasons. Still, when fiddleheads unfurl, we are months away from the first burdock burrs.

    1. I wasn’t thinking so much of burdock, but of those little – what do you call them – grass burrs? – that cling to your pants legs when you’re out walking. And in the ecosystems I am familiar with, there isn’t the four-season delineation that we have in the northern hemisphere (instead, only wet and dry seasons).

      Here’s a favorite way we enjoy the pako or fiddlehead fern:

      1. Oh, right. I wasn’t thinking about your Philippine frame of reference. Of course! I imagine “burr” is applied to quite a lot of things around the world. We call those “beggar ticks” here.

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