Lightning and the Lightning Bug


In troubled and troubling July, crowded with too much
yellow broken and bleeding green in leaf-shelf,
too much blue piling thick with four sorts of cloud in half
an afternoon: in such
backlogged heat and stack vapor pleading sleep,
I saw the usual storm come from nowhere,
from the breezes that stir at spider’s knees. Lying there,
lost in our own small keep,

the little loft I’d built, watching its window blaze
and branch, and space go ribbed and black and bright,
and the after-window linger on my loosened sight,
drift everywhere on my gaze
until it faded or the real exploded
from blackness past it, I saw a slow green spark
skating on the pink flare of that superior arc.
And one was rage, one coded

longing, or so I’d have it. Redress of power by power’s
the huge stage-show, but many of us are small
and startled, and do not threaten to rattle the planet at all.
Still, some of it is ours.
The underveining of a leaf perhaps merely,
brought out of night a moment. Time has its start
where water-drops ride the water because the rain is hard.
Thunder speaks. But not clearly.

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