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Katherine Riegel-IV







The tree flowers white—snow

on every cupped branch end

stuns me in this

March storm, how perfectly

the tree is shaped, how it sings

its chilly beauty even

to me, on this charcoal street,

full of my own mournful & nervous

songs. I think of other flowerings:

white cranes behind an air-conditioned house

in urban Bangkok, bright crimson speck

of beetle on a shiny evergreen leaf,

and, when I was five, waking

after a fall from a willow to

the worried faces of the neighbors’ Great Danes

hanging over me like helpless uncles—

how soft they were

under my fingers,

and how warm.