Gary Palmer © 2003
Lilith in Spring
Moss patches the oak with green
distraction, shivering beards where
crotch meets undressed limb,
forever considering contagions
in the clouds. Is your leaf carpet
shagged with frost? Your acorn
mound rubbled under snow panties,
the underblush one confesses
to the curb? Winter's leavings
break sorrows that squall
like naked shoulders to no natural sun.
Fall, freezefall, thaw: spilled seed
crushes Sanseoy and Samongelof
on the cusp of spring. The sky
vows to be your weather forever,
it is yours, it loves you, pet it,
it wants to sniff your ice. Crocuses
spear the garden with surprise.
Strike the sleeping stems like lips
with one finger-debris of winter,
born and half-born, passing and past,
lilim puffing the whirlwinds and dying
down the pale, a little stunned
declension merely, then dust.
Copyright © 2003
Rhoda Janzen teaches creative writing at Hope College in Holland, Michigan. She has recently appeared in The Yale Review, The Gettysburg Review, American Literary Review, and Borderlands.