'JUST THE WORST TIME'
This year time was long between
old gardeners tending
black-yellow heaps of smouldering leaves
and glowing children
armoured in Red River coats and muffler-turns---
and so as nude girls discovered bathing,
stricken,somehow unable to cover their breasts
the embarrassed trees fidgeted
in unsolicited sun.
We were embarrassed too,
prayed for great heavy drifts of snow
to cover trees and bare streets,
to heap on roofs of houses,
to swaddle mountains and waters----
but the snow came chin,
covering the ground like cheap gauze,
clinging in tatters to the bark,
preserving footprints in the mud.
No. It could not come like an aristocrat,
like de Bergerac,
like a white waving plume,
as we prayed for
and will pray for again.