Workers in glowing fluorescent shirts
mow and whack weeds. You and I
grab branches and roots to stop
our slide down a rutted path, juniper
seed cones like blue beads, years
counting down, too little time
to watch swallows drink on the wing,
like us in a hurry, stuffing insects
in wide open mouths of their young,
then gone again, hunting. I never know
when it’s the last walk, the last mosquito
tasting me. You say you admire God’s
excess, the surplus of ants, for example.
Boundless clouds. Noon rushes toward us.
A cardinal whistles sweet sweet sweet.
There’s barely time for our own lunch,
yellow mangos, Baldwin apples, sweet
cherries, juice on our fingers and lips.
Barbara Daniels’ book Rose Fever was published by WordTech Press and her chapbooks Black Sails, Quinn & Marie, and Moon Kitchen by Casa de Cinco Hermanas Press. Her poetry has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Mid-American Review, and many other journals. She received three Individual Artist Fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.