Today's poem is by Allen Braden

Almanac Magic
        for John Wood

Believe in the bounty of drought,
of fire and locust. Count on
jackrabbit luck to grow your seed
and the tip of a dipper for rain.

If the man in the moon is late arising,
and your wife swells with your future,
she'll be craving clay and kneeling down
to eat that dirt from the root cellar.

But know your future will grow up
to leave you, to follow the magpie
with a song of honey and foil
from city neon alive in its eyes.

You stay to plow through days of sod and rock
and pray the rusty dray outlasts the harvest.

Let the wild oat drill into your hands
crooked from handles of shovels and hayforks.
Read your future in the cracks of this land,
in the bumble of tumbleweed and the stir of the hive.

Now listen for wind to shush your wheat asleep
and the scythe as it whispers its name to the sheaves.

Copyright © 2010 Allen Braden All rights reserved
from A Wreath of Down and Drops of Blood
The University of Georgia Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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