Issue 18, Spring 1958
Four easy hours from San Francisco, yes
The sitting mallards tip like steel-plate ducks;
Between them, clay-pipe fishes leap and pop
Before your eyes, before your eyes are there.
As advertised, no crossed gray crosses mar
This primitive green backdrop, streaked with blue:
A frequency of birds, those poised performers.
Trace a thin band on purest wash of sky.
Here in the lake, the mountains cool their claws
And show their sleepless nerves merely as trees.
Stretch on the soft hot splinters of the pier.
Clench and extend your tackle, float it gently.
Settle your toes in rest, and take a bead.
Look up, look down, the birds move far and clear
Beyond green fish that measurelessly tread
The green plush colonnades of an obscure
Courtiership. The woman by you wakens.
Great arcs of growth and flight describe a sphere.