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Boon          George Johnston

Heat-weary head   the humid morning
moves with mounting   menace into day;
dims the deep woods,   dulls the skyline.
Sullen, slow-paced   sisterhood of haze
hover hang-breasted   hairy over fields,
fill with forthcoming   flood and thunder.
Thirst threads earth   in thin rootlets,
reaches restlessly   rock-branched for water
waiting for weather's   wild-handed boon.
Breath, a first breeze   brightens aspens
airy, easy.   All at once dark
dour-faced, driving,   day's burden
bursts in a blind flash   blunders among trees,
twists over tops,   tears bits away.
Outgush, Earth-hammer   issue of gods,
grandeur that gives   and grieves, magnificent.

Copyright © George Johnson, 1990. Originally published in
Endeared by Dark: reprinted by permission of the author.