The roses begin to fade and I consider
closing the windows at night but choose
blankets instead. I dream that an old friend
has taken to drink again, and the pain of it
blooms in the dark cavern of my chest, a deep-
red lily, a beautiful wound. Berries ripen
on the bushes. Uncountable birds. One bright
morning I find a kestrel in the dogwood,
eyeing the well-fed sparrows. Flowerbeds
hum with gold wasps, black wasps, grass-
hoppers, a black-and-white cat crouched
beneath the clematis. Old friend, how is it
that people are at ease with one another?
When I return from my walk by the river,
a hundred finches fly up from the gate.