Two Poems

August 28, 2020

 

 

 Paean

           

             after H.D.’s “Heat”

 

Apple

blossoms

curl their

delicate

ends: make

fists in air. April, the minor

god, sets his wet throat on the orchard—

hurls his

ice and wind. After days above, the yellow-

jacket must return to its clay den. The bright

kernel of sun still

lifts along its old path,

muted—made a soft and perfect circle by the clouds’ white veil. O

nectar-light,

O

plenum, O

quiescent star—

rend the pale

sky by its seams.

Turn the cold

under, turn it other. Pour yourself, again, into the

vellum-colored earth, make it

wet with light. Let the

xylem drink of

you; let each blossom be its own

zygotic sun.

 

 

 

 

Plenum

 

 

Just down the beach, a hive of honeybees is teeming—its mouth the open door to a yellow-hot

kiln. The world, it seems, is overfull. Wet ocean air

leaves beads on sawgrass clusters,

 

marks the inland sand like shadow. Somewhere out of sight, the moon is lurking dark and

new. The clouds above blush sun-hungry purple. The low

ocean extends its long tongue—

 

                            pale rose

                            quartz—

                            rakes and rakes its

 

                            soft white

                            teeth

                            upon the sand.

 

                                                                   Violet light washes down in eddies;

                                                                   washes the world gray. But the honeybees—

 

                            Xanthos-like, manes

                            yolk-bright—

                            zip and

 

                           alight on the

                           bluestar’s

                           collar;

 

draw out its color. It seems

every given thing is nuzzling the next, is

full to brimming, is a perfect form unblinking. Past the hive, a corpse-tree points

 

godward, its Socratic arm

heavy at the joint. I’m pointing, too. O honeybees,

I have lost all sense for walls. One thing is full of the other. I’m pointing, too.

 

 

 

 

 

Daniel Schonning’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry Magazine, Crazyhorse, The Pinch, Guesthouse, and elsewhere. His poem 'Aleph with all, all with Aleph' was selected by judge Cyrus Cassells as winner of the 2020 Lynda Hull Memorial Prize. He studies and teaches in Colorado, where he is currently working on a book of abecedarians.

 

 

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