Long After Hopkins

Nothing at dusk, lord, but dust
and road to keep it. The field kneels
under white pines, umbra the edge
to whom this is addressed :
a mind part fern, part birch :

two turkeys slowly S-ing their necks
through inflorescence, arrangement
more precise than what light leaves
fields : painterly flowers more color
than picture, more words for color
than tint : alizarin or violet, you could
write goldenrod, write cornflower,

but Queen Anne's lace still hems
the low horizon. Faith, what is it
abides, what's left of pastoral
but unreality. Ask artifice. Ask ornament.
Go ahead and ask : what principle
animates the natural : owl pink Lady's Slipper

orchid white-tailed deer woodchuck :
is it only what's visible that's knowable.
Twenty dandelions gone to seed;
tent worms slung in the articulated
tree; what's tiresome : mind
unanswered, writing to supply

scaffolds to hold up scenery, nothing
but queries and plywood, string
strung to a high struck bell auguring :
it's too late to see a third turkey
left headless, wreck of feathers
the owl scared, scattered in grass—

READ THIS POEM IN OTHER LANGUAGES
COMMENTS OF THE POEM