“In Another Season” By Christopher Raley

South wind shivers the leaves an anxious relief from summer’s heat,
and the moon fights a thin cover that might,
in another season, be a storm.

Bushes groan laments against the splintered fence,
and grass blades whisper a chatter so quiet
you get closely and do not hear it.

The man wants sleep but wonders: do enemies yet live?
Every liar is a mirror and every friend what I want,
so perhaps I should wonder, do friends yet live?
Is there a language more vague than friends and this wind?

She has traveled with this man
where brown fields are the truth of mid-day heat
and wondered how she truly knows
one who smiles through words so difficult to say.

Do distant oaks stand a line of cool?
Or, like thunderheads over the mountains,
offer relief delivering pressure?

They live life like the gap in the stride of shoe falls,
longing to hear a word so true it is substance,
yearning to blanket love in the rise and fall cave of winds
where close marches the beat of motive.

But the south wind blows through the screen
a channel of breath between two backs in bed.
The anxiety of trees is music for dreaming.

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