In pecks and bushels
at Shoemaker’s stand, they fill
the baskets with their golden heft,
their plush shoulders, handfuls
of light. Cut in wedges arranged
on a blue-glazed plate:
slices of sun in the August sky.
Take and eat, for this is the essence
of summer, given for you, in spite of
winter’s sure return, the short grey days,
the icy nights. Right now, there are wheat
fields and sweet corn, daylilies and chicory
by the dusty roadsides; in the long dusk,
fireflies decorate the grass, rise up
to meet their doubles, the stars.
Tonight, there’s fried chicken and sliced
tomatoes, hot biscuits, butter,
and peach jam. And later, you,
next to me on the rumpled
sheets, fuzz on the curve
of your cheeks and thighs,
your slick sweat on my skin.
And tomorrow, another hot one,
and that sweet juicy sun
will pop up again, staining
the horizon red, orange, gold.
From More, (C&R Press, 2010).
Used with the author’s permission.