Juno’s Garden

Nancy Naomi Carlson Click to read more...

ncarlson-13Nancy Naomi Carlson is the prize-winning author of two chapbooks and one collection of poetry. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in such journals as AGNI, The Georgia Review and The Southern Review. She is an associate editor of Tupelo Press and an instructor at the Bethesda Writer’s Center.

Jupiter spades the earth and sows the sky
while I tend thistle, mountain laurel, sage
and a tumbleweed fire – hearthless, undying.

Nothing lasts for long above the tree line –
not even omens, clouded and shifting shapes.
Jupiter spades the earth and sows the sky

with pigeons, centaurs, bears and broken lyres.
Music tuned to loss descends with rain.
I tend a tumbleweed fire – artless – that cannot hide

plots where nothing grows, where I’ve
planted diadems, Mother’s pearls and peacock tails.
Jupiter spades the earth and sows the sky.

In this rock garden, under a layer of schist, lies
swan’s down, white and tender – oh so tender – saved
from a tumbleweed fire – breathless and blind;

darts from Cupid’s bow that have strayed;
Semele’s heart and Lamia’s eyes.
Jupiter spades the earth and sows the sky.
I tend a tumbleweed fire – heartless, unbridled.

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