Once again the apple orchard aches
beneath the fragile weight of October
and the ooze of too-ripe apples beneath boots.
You may surely eat of every tree—
only beware the hidden worm and the wasp,
the sting that is the bitterness of the first bite.
Wasn’t it sweeter last time?
When half the sky expands in starlight
while the other submits to shadows and clouds
and a lashing of heat lightning—
then all is clear. You hear the silence
you were anxious to hear
in the warm breeze above the valley before the storm.
You are nothing before the storm.
Embellished images hang on the walls
of the corridors of memory.
The echoes of seasons blurred with seasons
passing. Anticipation budding
in liminality. The promise of the apple
blossom; a dim scent of rain. Longing
after longing and longing again.
Cameron Brooks is a writer from South Dakota. He earned his M.A. from Princeton Theological Seminary and serves as the Managing Editor and poet for Vanora, an artist collaboration site. His poems have appeared in the Scurfpea Publishing poetry anthology The Scandalous Lives of Butterflies (2015), Fathom, and elsewhere.