St. Francis’s feast day. More earthquakes in Assisi:
hard to ignore coincidence even quiet
in a cafe courtyard on the Monongahela,
reading tarot with eight ladies of a certain age,
another twentyish in Nikes and one four year old
who’s saying I’m the teacher now
perched on a garden chair
perched in gravel by a pool
where goldfish cut slow circles.
Sun slants down the vine-webbed wall
as readers bend to worksheets, fill in dates,
adding up “personal symbols for guidance and inspiration,”
A yellowjacket stops for sugar,
checks the plastic tub of peppermint, fleabane
and one marigold, dead souls’ carpet,
the same red of these vine-berries
which fall and fall.
Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 14, Issue 2.