So far this morning, I've washed dishes, towels, and the dog. Meanwhile, a small rain taps against the shingles, and I am thinking of the apples I must buy and the checkbook I must update and the bread I must bake and the damp soccer game I must sit through. My mind is a bulletin board of obligations I did not meet while I was reading poems in coffee shops and church halls.
Outside my open window, a chickadee is back-talking a red squirrel. The rain has dwindled to drips. I wonder if a new crop of mysterious mushrooms has blossomed in the forest. I wonder why I can't stop opening my poetry readings with Jane Kenyon's "The Sandy Hole," which is a terrifying poem, maybe the scariest four-line poem I have ever read, and not a cozy way to introduce myself to strangers.
I wonder how I will write to Donald Hall about that poem, or if I will.
Downstairs, the dishwasher has ground to a halt. A single raindrop bounces from the drip-edge onto the porch roof below. In the garden, a mass of red dahlias swoons into the long grass.
If Caliban were hiding beneath the sagging deck, he would crawl out now, into the dank green daylight, and shuffle down the wheel tracks into the mother-clutch of the dark wet wood.