Taylor, Bruce (ed.) / Wisconsin poetry (special issue)
volume 79, No. 2
Smith, Thomas R.
"Thistledown," "Ode to wooden steps," "Olivet," "Snow flying," and "Keeping the star", pp. 182-188 PDF (954.4 KB)
Thomas R. Smith Thistledown For the first time after long heat, the sun floats pale above the oak savanna, its edges drawn. Now begins the movement inward, withdrawing its flame from the high places of summer and striving, to fully inhabit its depths, its ring of steady warmth. For it is the warmth, not the fire, of long-lasting love which endures the burning- off of years and bodies, stirred in us now by that autumnal heartbeat. Two crows fly together, their cries going out before them to meet the darkening burr oaks on the hill. Thistledown falls as if from open drawers, fold upon fold of linens tumbled before the goldenrod. On its own journey, the sower of thistles travels with us, a homespun beauty finely feathered. I lift one to the wind, coppery wings carry it over fields toward the inward-circling sun. 182
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