Poetry

The Green Pearl

 for Nicholas

You found in sun-patch

the gleaming double-eye

of a dragonfly

pinched green bead

you held in the small clam

of your cupped hands

the bright sheen

water-smooth depth of it

found only in the like

of the patient

long lay down of—

the seventy times seven

times grace of nacre

applied as faithful prayer is

to the predicament

of nature. You

were adamant we make it

something precious

so we set it in

a little ruby ring box

to keep it safe—but when

we came back to it

the lustrous iridescence

had died as all

live fires do

confined in the small dark

compartments of our days.

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