As you step outdoors you’ll enter a hot barn
with a moist haystack inside.
The cardinals will dart like embers, pierce
pierce your nerves with their bent sabres.
You’ll be intimate with traffic for miles around.
But if you look up where the twigs
all stiffly point, you’ll see silent
pandemonium, ugly rumors,
vagrant clouds loitering at loose ends.
It’s a schizophrenic air.
By supper the sky will be uprooted,
a garden hopelessly gone to seed.
Gray broccoli will float by disconnected
from the ground, fat sooty toadstools,
a species you’ve never seen before,
will sprout beside swollen fungi
and other gray growths, strange weeds trailing
their severed roots, flowers the color
of bad bruises just opening into blossom,
slowly moving areas of combustion.
Even cauliflower as it rolls past
will be misshapen
before the forest comes
— Jonathan Holden