Today's poem is by Karen Skolfield

Frost in the Low Areas

The health survey said
he would live to 76 and I, 86.
Something to do with men's

hearts on their worn old grapevines.
Something to do with their will
to lay down and die. In the westerns,

how glad they were to give their lives
away. Bad guy, if you can't shoot down
a junebug's nostril, you don't stand

much of a chance. Men, thinking
they don't have to cut power
to a bound-up sawblade.

Just think, Dennis says. Ten years
to yourself. No one stealing
the sheets or the last of the ham.

He says this as we make pesto.
This is how we joke with
each other, ha ha, and then

we kiss. Seriously, he says,
imagine no more socks
on the mantle. My arms

the sharp odor of garlic. Basil.
Parmesan cheese. Tonight,
a frost the herbs

won't survive. Twilight
we worked the rows,
frantic, our gentleness gone.

Behind us, nothing but stems
and their faint heat. Before us,
the first crisp morning.

Copyright © 2011 Karen Skolfield All rights reserved
from Sugar House Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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