portion of the artwork for Gary Sloboda's poem

Song of Virtue
Gary Sloboda

Near poverty. Fog patches. Beetles on the wall leave tracks from the sink water they move through. At this time of day. Dog piss darkens trunks. Sun excoriates the birds. Like skin splitting through the bottlebrush trees. And that same light is lying on the table. Where wind moves the pages of the book. Teases dead wings. Air pressure rattles front door. Becomes the sound of a jet and a mattress truck heaving up the hill. Reading corinthians. It equates with the various stages of ash compiled in the cup of my girlfriend. Who is gone. This afternoon blending the reds in. At the window. There’s a focusing of perspective too. So plainspoken. Like crystal. Pure. The stockings come down off the lines. And dandelions raft on the wind. Short-circuits the eyes. Breath of a bus bearing graffiti. Door in the mind back-lit by fireflies. Before stairs and up. In a moment. A shutter opening. A click. The briefest eternity. We saw and forgot. On steps above the plastic pool. The smell of mildew flooded with the density of life. Fecund. As if the season stood apart. Not knowing end.

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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 30 | Fall 2010