Night Watch

How many moons ago
when the earth stood on its edge,
grass half-greened and trees,
like empty clotheslines
creaking, their voices lifted
in the fawn breeze, when
the sharp, the loud, the clash
of cloud and heat,
the cracked, clumsy crash
of dish or glass or fragile
frame, when noise bit
like shrapnel, splintered scrap
of rock, metal, when reason
for a rabbit to slip a corner,
for a raccoon to reach
out its hand, when the light
did not frighten, the brilliant
not seem essential, when the pace
of earth toward the edge
of spring smelled bitter
as hyacinth, did sunlight slice
as thin a reflection as tonight?

Five Quarterly, Fall 2015