We move to Ohio in August,
when Ohio is all husk and yard:
chicken wire and metal stakes,
shards of tulips, last night’s bottles.
We carve a garden behind the garage,
let Ohio wedge under our nails,
let Ohio crust over our shoes.
We don’t mark our cheeks with clay.
but Ohio covers our eyes, gets caught
in our hair. Bees nesting in the eves
get dizzy in the heat, get lost inside
the window panes, noisily fling
their delicate colors against the glass.
We sleep through the static,
let Ohio die in the living room,
let Ohio crunch underfoot
in the morning. We try to dream Ohio,
speak Ohio, but our garden goes in
too late for anything except oregano,
rosemary, bushes that won’t be good
until next year anyway. We want to be
rooted in Ohio, to sleep in its cradle,
snug in the old steel and plywood
and loss. We should stop,
let Ohio bury what we plant,
let Ohio take the herbs, next year’s
spices, let go of desire. We water
everyday instead. Ohio doesn’t mind.
We sit on the front porch, watch
a hawk track a pair of finches, circle
the same oak trees. We go inside before
the finches falter, before hawk seems
to wait, tender with their fatigue, fat
in the Ohio sky. Before the dive, Ohio
lets us step through the threshold,
lets us step between the dead bees.
Ohio turns our eyes black and yellow,
turns us into small bodies of white noise.
Photo By: LASZLO ILYES