Friday, June 30, 2017

Sauvie Island Eternal Return Octets

                        for Sandy

1. Convenience Store

parallel to candy bar racks, cardboard bins
filled with lead sinkers, pyramids & oblongs,

the addition of gravity to current,
carrying lures down to sturgeon depth; bobbers

meantime, red & white confections, put you in
mind of floating; we talk about watching the twitch

on still water as the fish nibbled sending
gray ripples out in circles a long time past

2. Pastoral

the llama watching a flock of sheep as it
kneels in the cottonwood’s shade hasn’t been sheared;

heat hasn’t started to shimmer off blacktop,
but an osprey rides a low thermal over

that hayed pasture; a kestrel swoops up, perches
on a power line, goes still against spotless

blue sky—it stretches deep in this heat; flowers
have replaced the engine of the red farm truck

3. Strawberry Picking

snow fields on the three mountains rise north & east;
scarlet hearts on their runners in rows lining

that knoll; juice on fingers, dust in sneaker mesh,
orange sun hat shading your face as you crouch—

light translated to that sweet taste on the tongue,
juice oozing from bags, the bottom layer pressed—

downhill, hydrangeas reflect sky, daisies
reflect sun as if this was a child’s painting

4. Multnomah Channel

bald eagle soars between sun & moored houseboats;
father, mother, children each casts a line from

rocks just down the channel from where we duck in
the cold wake the sailboat’s inboard engine

transmits to the shore; water that green black blue
the Chinese call nature’s color, at least in

translation; rocks sharp underfoot, cottonwood
pollen floating: lightness, risk, as if children

Jack Hayes
© 2017

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