First

Dull sounds running
through the trees, dropped and shaken, sapid Galas clenched like
blue fists

on the chilling dirt, flecking the orchard rows, the mush under
my bare soles
rinsing to a sudsy clay as we walked back through the wet grass.

The house was still with early dark
as if the windows had been papered black, the far road a rising river of headlights
from the porch.

I sat beside my sister on the stair. She curled and fell asleep under
the big limb of my arm,
tart smell of her dried sweat just like my own.

Brian Glaser teaches at Chapman University in Orange, California. His poems have appeared in Ploughshares, North American Review, Literary Imagination and other journals.

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