My footsteps startle a hundred coots
from water's edge; their wakes reflect
waning sun. The moon rises
and one white feather ruffles up
from pebbles and sand. No eagles
harassed by crows, no milky-blue herons
scooping minnows from shallows.
Only a scratching of red-twigged
dogwood, and ruined grasses.
Nothing before, and nothing after.
(Started this three years ago; dug it up
and pruned it. I need to prune my roses
and grapes too. Need to work on the metaphor
of the grapes, on rose-diction.
Need to put all the roses in tidy four-line stanzas.)