Randy Blasing (1987)
A stand of paper birches years & years
of lovers have tattooed with their black hearts
& initials shades the starved baby tapping
his mother's breast like a downy woodpecker.
In the marsh behind him, red-winged blackbirds
go down in flames to feed
cattail-sheltered nestlings, while bullfrogs
tune their bass instruments as if rehearsing
for the night ahead. Here, where generations
have come to leave their mark
in passing, the plus signs
still add up to something like desire:
all the letters of the alphabet
in love with each other to this day.