section from July (the plan in this area involved inside-out end-rhymes):


Across the wide ms. river shedding dough
and papyrus and leaping from junk
to junk the lincoln logs nudge
through dislodged snow driftwood

and balsam leaves and patches
of wet birch scrolled by heartworms
glowing under the bark the storm-
blown shells of beaver's feverish scrap-

muddled shields this is the stripped
taiga icebreaking in early spring
not unlike what you glimpsed
through the frozen window pressed

against the glass across rays of evening
through the black oak limbs peace
of horizon after century and seeping century
of sleeping centurions a last bronze shell given

away like a gong, Grandpa for distant Florence
swaddled in the haze of Voronezh hills
as the cardinal heart of a wood-dove swells
under the wooden ribs under their rough-

riffled sheath or shield of Grandma's
steel-eyed span the bird like a grain
of wheat (hidden there in Grandad's
elevator beneath remorse of guards)

piano thread of Pushkin-pizzicato violins
at the end indeed given not for the dead
but for the living a small knot of dried
clover out of mortgaged left field

shared by forty fingers in quartet
(thundering from empty oildrum of
Caesar's steel band's josh rolled-out)
a stalwart convalescent sweet Q-root


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