by David Hoadley

The earth of my father's father turns again,
its ancient course, slow and resolute.
Small streams undercut the morning ice
that still glazes pavement,
little mirrors in fitful motion.

As the life-star begins to measure
winter's gait in receding shadow,
and trunks move their hundred ragged crowns
to a new wind,
the ghost tread of a thousand springs,

Scattered cumulus gather in a fleecy sky,
unsure against the valley frost
that still holds winter to the seed,
but frames in swelling blue and white
the echoing return of distant wings.

Carefully, down from the shelf
comes the painters tools,
leather cases with straps,
black boxes with shiny knobs,
polarizers, filters, and convex lenses.

The care-taker turns to the window to look out
past the crocus and the tulips,
past the hyacinth and phlox,
past the quick, small shadows in new grass,
past all of these to a distant rim

While a few old leaves from fall
swirl nervously about the yard,
then are swept away in a sudden gust,
leaving only
the searching eye of the chaser.

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