Dawnshift, October

Sing of passing days and the half-colors of the early morn;

sing of all the tricks time plays when one is unaware.

Sing of morning stars as they fade out amidst the coming dawn,

lost to opalescent light or fierce fluorescent glare.

We'll wait there in the alley for the keyholder to come,

unlock the doors, turn on the store, and claim our work begun.

Now softly does the earth release its sun-borne energy

relinquished to the wind upon the backs of crackling leaves.

And crystal condensation climbs the glass and grassy tips,

while faintly glows a window—someone shivers 'neath the eaves.

We wait there in the morning for the one who holds the keys—

some days he is on time; some days we linger in the breeze.

A memory of light. . . falls from the shelf, and so then I

bend down to pick it up—how these books jump—and carry on,

past plate-glass windows painted black by the still-darkened sky,

inside this golden cage, this isolated cabochon.

Through all the morns we waited for keyholders to alight,

the dawns were drifting backward—we slid down into the night.