The Hollow (26)

This entry is part 26 of 48 in the series The Hollow

 

that gap between
crowns of adjacent trees
and what goes on underground

 

just one fling
on the way up

fox grape

 

Solomon’s seal

withered leaves curl around
the glossy black drupe

 

crustose lichen on a rock

its complex inner life

The Hollow (25)

This entry is part 25 of 48 in the series The Hollow

 

leaning
this way or that

forest-dwelling goldenrod

 

not a mere patch
but a stand

the black cohosh

 

fairy bells
berried
under their leaves

 

naked-flowered tick trefoil

“leaflets three” but only
the name itches

The Hollow (24)

This entry is part 24 of 48 in the series The Hollow

 

salamander
under the lifted rock

that frozen moment

 

turtleheads

self-consciously closing
my mouth

 

borer-killed
woodpecker-stripped
white
ashes

 

left behind
the salamander’s tail
goes on wriggling

The Hollow (23)

This entry is part 23 of 48 in the series The Hollow

 

spicebush fills
the opening the big birch left

that allspice scent

 

“heteromorphic
self-incompatibility”

partridgeberry’s red pills

 

END OF PUBLIC ACCESS

sun shining right through
the plastic sign

 

where the road crosses the creek
a crayfish
walking upstream

The Hollow (15)

This entry is part 15 of 48 in the series The Hollow

 

touch-me-not

the invasive stiltgrass stops
just short of it

 

glasswort
jumpseed
enchanter’s nightshade

a distant rooster

 

that gurgle we dug
this pit to reach as kids

it’s still down there

 

wingstem
at the old dump site

the bumblebee’s long tongue

Violet Hill

This entry is part 87 of 91 in the series Toward Noon: 3verses

 

The first surveyor—1795—
labeled this mountain Violet Hill.
Did he study it in the blue distance,

or see right at his feet
the crowds of violets fluttering
under the attention of the rain?

A warbler just back from the tropics
sings quietly, as if trying to locate
all the notes.

Door

This entry is part 85 of 91 in the series Toward Noon: 3verses

 

A haze of jewelweed sprouts,
the dimpled embryonic leaves
like conjoined twins.

From the valley, the sound
of horses pulling a buggy
in their eight steel shoes.

The crooked sassafras—
something has found under its bark
a blood-colored door.

Up in the hollow

This entry is part 81 of 91 in the series Toward Noon: 3verses

 

A small cloud on the cliff
above the railroad tracks—
the shadbush is in bloom.

As I drive up the hollow on
our one-lane road, a red-tailed hawk
passes me going down.

All the spring ephemerals are emerging,
leaves wrinkled and damp
like freshly pitched tents.

In hepatica time

This entry is part 78 of 91 in the series Toward Noon: 3verses

 

It’s cold. Mid-day
and the hepatica flowers are still
only half-open, nodding

on their thin stalks.
My mother tallies them up—
stroke-marks in her notebook.

At the top of a hemlock tree,
a porcupine sleeps in a sunlit
halo of quills.