for Karen Donovan (who noticed them)
Here’s a photo – a flock of ducks in the river
swathed in steam-shimmer, lithe silver & gold.
The day itself was overcast, crepuscular; an old
sepia print of Providence (unknown engraver).
Those ducks for certain make a joyful noise
though for us it’s only a tacit Jubilee. &
snow was just a sketch, a promissory
morning sprinkle : 7 wavy scimitars
of moon-flakes, traipsing their descent
to elemental winter ground. It was a sign
for manna from the summer sun – the Son
of Man (intuitive angel of untold ascent,
centripetal within each ice-bound tear)
flutes in the market as predicted – yet
that handish cloud overhead is implicate
with wing-tip folds; yon leafy paramour
Jessie O’Balm’s forming up up there
a demonstration (maybe very gentle rain
later today). Sleep on it, Berryman; let
splay of almond palm undo the nightmare
(this is my prayer). You had an answer in
your own, when rondure of an unkempt heart
spun back upon her yearning path (O startling
Ind). The sprite who knelt beside you there
came dropping slow (like Chesley by shoreline,
shielding struts with ingrained, unaccountable
care). Benign, compounded with the fallible...
infallible & secret element (a sign, cosine).