The sun has not yet brimmed the valley’s lip,
but light spills shallowly across the sky.
I sop up tea from the saucer with my toast.

I wake these days to the sparrows and finches, the wrens
and warblers. The palest early air suits me.
I like the chill — I breathe more easily.

The groundhog under the neighbor’s porch hoists
his nose up high. Maybe he’s checking for bobcats
before he fatly wobbles across the lawn.

The begonias bloomed unnoticed while I suffered
importantly inside. The rain so late
in June escaped my notice. I got so sick

this year. Lent, Easter, Pentecost —
all lost. I rose in Ordinary Time —
weak, persisting as if by accident.

Shaky, I spill more tea into the saucer.
A deer looks up from thistles at the tree line.
She has seen the first shadows of dawn.

As daylight grows, the shadows sharpen. My own
shadow now falls across the spiderweb
wet with dew, across the fungal ring

in the tall grass. Soon, I will cross the threshold
soon I will trap the groundhog with a killing
trap, fence the garden from the deer,

seek out the tree where the sparrow sings,
and pluck the fruit that will have ripened there.

Photo by Guido Jansen on Unsplash

J-T Kelly

J-T Kelly is an innkeeper in Indianapolis. He lives in a brick house with his wife and five children, his two parents, and a dog. Work in or upcoming in EcoTheo Review, Ekstasis, and Grand Little Things.

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