the brick, an open cypher
of a window frame
and there, behind gauze curtains,
the smooth line of a boy's back
I wrote this tanka last summer, and today it appeared in the back of my mind, like waking up with a song clenched between your teeth. We are still trapped in the depths of winter; a solid month separates today from equinox, and we are all raw and half-mad from the brutality of the past few weeks. Today the winds shifted and carried tepid air and dangerous black clouds overhead, melting the piled snow and slicks of glass-clear ice on half-shoveled sidewalks. But winds turn quickly, and soon our thaw will retreat back into the frozen dirt and silent crocus bulbs.
But today, somehow, I remembered this poem, remembered the soothing freedom of a summer afternoon, to walk through the neighborhood without the pretense of errand and let your eyes linger on every flower, every facade. Buffered by breezes instead of cutting winds, you slow to let your skin soak up every scent hovering in the humidity. The bright sun at 7pm. The sound of a lawn mower, cicada song, our sweet, drowsy comfort in the warm months.