THIS MORNING THE PEACH IS A WORLD
by Viola Weinberg
for Charlie Peacock
Dangling, pendulous for weeks . . . even the
Bees leave the lavender patch this morning
To nuzzle the fuzz of the peach as I watered
Sacramento style, with a fine mist
From a long steel wand, overhead spray
Falling 7 a.m., sudden summer shower
From the uncoiled hose, wet and cool
Blowing straight up in a plume
Soft, pumice and flume, water falling
Summer hat and thin robe, feet in slippers
The fruit nestled in its cup of leaves
Like a comfortable belief, that peach
So close to the reach, so far away
As the heat rose, the sugar came up in a bubble
Nectar-tempting to the touch
One finger held up, straight and plumb
Draining a drop in a mid-afternoon sigh,
It's too high to reach without a ladder
In the blasting heat, circling the tree
The peach, my perfect globe, surely it's
The perfect size of my outstretched hand
As eleven comes on, we all retreat
To the house, shutters and shades drawn
Even the frisky dog is laid down by the day
Outside, the peach splits its skin and drips
By dinner, it is picked, skinned and pitted
After the meal, we sit outside in the dark
The juice running down our elbows
Licking the blood of the peach finally in my reach
A perfect world that peach, and now a perfect peace
HERE by Sophia Ewing
SONGS OF JUNE
by Mia Parviainen
I sing of woven bird songs, calls, responses that wander
amid warm breezes and rustling green
as water trickles around mossy rocks and laps in shallows streams.
Red strawberries flare under viny patches of leaves, suspended over dark earth, and
the solar-warmed, sun-reddened delights form sweet explosions when sampled.
I sing of majestic blooms, the size of melons for fruit salads,
the perfume of mid-June day,
the delicate fragrance that flows along the winds.
Clover flowers, buttercups, violets dot the lovely expanses,
shaded by white pine, blue spruce, and fully-clothed swamp maples, oaks,
silver birch, black cherry, and elm.
I sing of white plumes of flowers on thorny, prickly red brush
that scratches the skin, that tears clothing;
flowers that will give way to raspberries and blackberries that stain.
I sing of scraggly blueberry bushes and the swampy ground,
the skeletal dead protrusions,
the hard green berries, anxious to turn to purple to blue, to tartness and sweetness,
for August's muffins and pies.
I sing of crab apple trees, stripped of pink petals of spring, their luster, their glamour,
now plain, green, and awkward and nobby, and crookedly beautiful;
I sing of the evening galumph of the bullfrog, the massive smooth-skinned king
of ponds, of puddles, and mud, the interrupter of early evening slumber,
the royal whose toadies rest under the bug-light,
awaiting the buzz to electric-powered insecticide of June evenings.
I sing of the claps of thunder that resound and force hands to be slammed over ears,
the shaking of the earth, the double-barreled shot-gun burst of purple light,
the tentative clean smell that settles as the clouds depart.
Dandelions, bane of gardeners, the color of delighted childhood, making for crowns
for short-lived tiny kings and queens,
and the joys of dispersing their seeds in one long, continual stream of air,
little parachutists scattered to embed, to control, to multiply
the joys of June over the remainder of the summer.