Two Poems by June Rockefeller
Berry bushes in pine beds, a summer without rain.
We walk a break line to the river picking what’s left
of the fruit. At noon they’ll light the drip torches
on Hardwood Hill leaving only the stumps to smolder.
Control and burn: I understand this.
Like eulogizing a friend before he’s gone.
I prepared for the flames but not the ash, the depths of char
and scent. It seems today, even the burning valley would agree,
the breeze cools us in a way that feels cruel.
I used to think religion was a response to fear
but maybe they’re more akin, an ancient love story:
like obsession and compulsion. Worry
and trying hard not to. How else to assuage one thing
if not by replacing it with another?
The snow was deep and you were warm.
You looked so God-like. What was I running from?
I don’t miss you,
I fear you. I’m not interested in prayer
I need something to do with my hands.