Driving along Route 19, heading north, this morning’s drizzle isn’t the winter I expect in January, in a sunken rural patch. The dreary lake sky becomes a water-stained backdrop to a farmhouse with its collapsed barn bound in wild grape and its leafless stand of boxwood & ash that sway back, and forth, in the absence of snow. The truth be told, it’s uninspiring.
Nothing’s left to imagination, except for that wasp’s nest, dangling from a high branch like a forgotten paper lantern. Its stark presence catches my eye as only a distraction can slow my miles per hour. I squint at its turban still wrapped in perfection. The sight of it stings. Seeing what survives beyond summer makes me slow to a full stop & stare at what looms before me.
This part of the whole, once hidden, once dangerous & alive; each cell is a room made of conditions. The treachery of so many mouths moving in the heat of construction; yet, no one knew this warehouse existed. No one saw its temporal industry. I’m only a mile away from home. The radio plays a lonesome nocturne for this landscape that disintegrates on its own.
M. J. Iuppa lives on Red Rooster Farm near the shores of Lake Ontario. Most recent poems, lyric essays and fictions have appeared in the following journals: Poppy Road Review, Black Poppy Review, Writers Rising Up’s 2015 Digging to the Roots Poetry Anthology Calendar, Ealain, Poetry Pacific, Snow Jewel, 100 Word Story, Avocet, Eunoia Review, Festival Writer, Silver Birch Press’s Where I Live anthology, Turtle Island Quarterly, Wild Quarterly, Boyne Berries (Ireland), The Lake (UK), Punchnel’s, Camroc Press Review, Tar River Poetry, Corvus Review, Clementine Poetry Journal, Postcard Poems and Prose, and Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction (Norton), edited by Judith Kitchen and Dinah Lenney, among others. She is the Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Minor Program at St. John Fisher College.