POETRY: TIM STALEY – PRUNING THE AGAVES

Pruning the Agaves

 

A comet of freeze slams our backyard white—

 

shuts ants in their tunnels, locks bile

in the ducts, blocks with ice her portal vein

 

makes succulents messy puppets

stretched yellow against the snow.

 

Before the freeze their heads were fierce spires

with time to hoist their cymes of yellow flowers.

 

Now she’s hoarse with shrieking, I hear her

between the blows of my shovel, into the rot

 

I slosh my blade, she fades, is that

our phone ringing? is it Houston? do they

 

have a liver? is the jet on the way?

I keep hauling agaves to the dumpster,

 

they smell of tequila and vomit, yellow ooze

stains my gloves. Suzanne stalls on the threshold,

 

says, spring is coming, but it’s not to us

the promise of spring is made.

~

This poem was originally published in Staley’s debut collection Lost On My Own Street.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s