By Brenda Hillman, from a work in progress. Hillman’s collection Extra Hidden Life, Among the Days was published last month by Wesleyan University Press.
In winter, among laws of probability
the quiet ones merge
into earth. They sort the fertile chaos
from flat statement.
What they derived was vital & vast,
a justice outside our usual music.
Packed into again dry ground
shapedseeds point south :::
sprout, yonderlings! We’ve been in touch
with the king of thieves
who keeps our health; all
the wild noons hang down.
i sort the troubled jewels of intention,
i count the half-rings of the owl,
i ponder my petty resentments
& can maybe keep
two of the twenty-four (ponder
yonder ponder yonder); weak one,
don’t pretend you’ve seen enough
to change the ratio—
(then a whatness
seeped from the lining of our hearts,
& let us switch tones to survive—)