Roy Herndon Smith

All’s words squirreling on thinly present lines
before they leap vast voids in singular bounds,
the lattice window casting patterns of light,
angled sunlight in an unclouded morning,
the same patterns, still and soft, in falling dusk,
from the street light after I turn the lights out.

All’s rhythms, repeating, not, what’s left in, out,
words, like squirrels, quarreling, stilling, on lines
curving between houses, in the early dusk
stretching light on the sidewalk between the bounds
of shadows cast by trees that, in the morning,
glow gold in the golden horizontal light.

All’s matrices of spaces, cut-outs of light,
back-lighting squirrels flying off branches, out
of spaces, like words flying through the morning
silences beyond pauses, between the lines
branches make around brightness, out of the bounds
words make around space in the silent grey dusk.

All’s squirrels chattering in the eerie dusk
emptying into silent night, glints of light,
memories of light, words chattered between bounds
of bodies touching and parting, in and out,
words intimating absences in these lines
that break through light on this screen in this morning.

All’s now, this moment, in this early morning
darkness before the light, the day, the long dusk,
remembered, imagined, in words, cuts in lines,
words like splinters of darkness cleaving the light,
squirrels remembered, imagined, cleaving out
to in and branch to branch in breathtaking bounds.

All’s here, Michael, in the particular bounds—
the light in your window this lifting morning,
the light that lets me know you’re up, but not out,
and me writing about squirrels making dusk
light—of the particular distance like light
between me writing and you reading these lines.

Reality’s chattering in bounds at dusk,
then, in blue-grey snowy morning silent light,
out of all comprehension in broken lines.