Reading Steinbeck in November’s late and
surprising sun, a single rose opening to crimson
on the bush from where the others were cut
to bloom indoors; and from the fecund touch of
his narrative also grows this palpable unknown -
I won’t have it a god’s - but nature’s unnatural threat
years after the grandeur and doom of his
writing about certain uncertainty in its poise.
Now how to strike a balance, convince you
my telling and feelings are as real, the true
thrall of the tale as much in that bud here in this
garden where I sit reading and drinking coffee,
domestic and eased and fortunate, but still to sense
and worry as well how something is growing awry.