Saturday, August 30, 2014


Hadley Paul Garland, "Moon Set," 2009

“While most plants open up their stomata during the day, cacti and other nocturnal plants such as the agaves and aloes open their pores at night.” - LiveScience

Opening up’s risky in a dry country. That star near our skin is desiccant,
lifting enough moisture from every pore to make our blood thick, our
thoughts parched. So we adapt, become nocturnal, move like revenants
among moonlit cacti. Even the spectrum shuts: at this midnight hour
it’s all rods and scotopic vision, no cones or colors. There’s a pulse to
these nighttime walks, the heart’s systole and diastole echoing stomata
as they close, then open. We breathe together; our spines gather dew.
Above us, jeweler’s velvet and the spilled bowl of far stars arcing: fermata
with a dot of moon. Stomata and lips part open in the high desert night;
inspiration and exhalation, an exchange of damp sighs across taxonomies,
sighs but no sounds save a dry scuffle: a mouse darting out of sight,
perhaps, near the base of a dozing creosote, stomata shut. Astronomies
older than ours were an opening up, a gaze into mystery;
my insomniac self lies awake, on the other side of that history.


lowenkopf said...

Posting is risky on an arid Internet. A panegyric to you for your efforts.

Larry said...

Once again you have proven that a good observer is often a good poet. I love scientifically-informed poems! This is a keeper.

Bill said...

This is pretty amazing!