Prairie Poetry   

we daughters of dust hold secrets
behind the rise and fall of breath
something else respires there,
endless land and sky collide
birthing the landscape our childhood,
the secret of our selves

it is with me even here, exiled by the sea,
in the sighing of the waves
as they rush in and then retreat
i hear a deeper mother breathing,
floating white tufts of the cottonwood
like slow, strange snow in June

with salt air clinging to my skin i feel
sticky summer evenings chasing lightening bugs,
their stuttered beams like earth-bound stars,
a galaxy gracing the lawn as day exhales
its steam into my tar-stained feet
and the sky grows mysterious and velvet

the lovelorn coo-y coo-y of the meadowlark,
puffing up his lemon chest, is swallowed in the swelling
screeeecher screeeecher of cicadas,
the familiar chorus crescendos and subsides
without reason, a harbinger
of daylight's final fading

maternal silence now descends,
her dark cloak filling cooled expanses
as they begin to throb with productivity —
under her cover, a strange hope is spreading,
dodging neon trails of moon
to sew the seed of seasons
in the fertile gathering night

  Amanda Ayers
  Copyright © 2008 Amanda Ayers
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