Bare

Her feet in my lap are bare.

Smooth white arches,
pearl crescents of her nails,

warm in the artificial summer
the fireplace creates.

The frozen ghost of December
scratches at January window frost
and that puts her feet one month closer
to prickle grass and caterpillars,
cahaba lilies on an Alabama river
like white and green fireworks
on crystal flowing canvas.

For now, she’s mine,
tempted to stay with me for
the honeyed words she coaxes
from my tongue, for the flicker
of firelight in the black iron stove.

I wonder if Hades mourned the approach
of April’s falling rains; herald of
Persephone’s departure —

I know I do.

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