from A Reading (11-17), section 14

for Frances Jaffer

the bears
in their ferocious aspect
throwing up a symptom.
garbage in the night
a watch one would not awake from.
now it rains more or less quietly
though a storm had been evoked only moments before
a gale at full tilt.
the whole chorus of familiars
the arching leaves trembling
the muttering and nattering
all this mothering and fathering
in a waystation of the world.

power paged and set aside
some slow circling back
even as I drew the orbit of the seasons
moving again to that day
when the sun stood still
then provoked its head

she has lived for years in the shade
of this gnawing and withering

going easily even carelessly into it
even as I might look up
to see her
ahead of me walk quietly into the trees
as I yet in the full light
an upland meadow
a little after noon
a respite

-- Beverly Dahlen
San Francisco,
January 3--March 18, 1981

This excerpt from A Reading (11-17), Potes & Poets Press. 1989.
Other books by Beverly Dahlen include: Out of the Third. San Francisco,
Momo's Press. 1974: A Reading 1-7. Momo's Press. 1985; A Reading 8-10.

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