Today's poem is by Karen Donovan

I Love to Stand on the Backs of the Turtles

Night opens the oaks
above me, above a bench where a man is
rolled in a coat and dreaming
the acorns are stars.

Across the square
water falls into a dish of pebbles.
The acorns drop in sparks.

The man sleeps under newspapers.
As he breathes, the prices of stocks
rise and fall. Water falls

from bronze turtles with hooked
jaws, each tail a spiked curl. Two pike
leap from a globe. No cupids.

Beneath the leaves the oaks
let go of, this man
dreams. His lover's breasts are moonlit
apples he climbs to touch, and as he falls
he cries and knows he is awake.

I walk in leaves. The acorns are moons
stamped by streetlights. I love
to stand on the backs of turtles

while water falls into water and the pool
never fills and never empties.
I carry my house, my four red rooms,

to the edge of the pool of circles
of water. This city.
All clear to the bottom.

Copyright © 2005 Karen Donovan All rights reserved
from Eleventh Muse
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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