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Midnight Loon


Burglars enter an apartment and ransack drawers;
finding neither gold nor cash, they flee,

leaving the laundry and bathroom lights onó
they have fled themselves. I catch the dipping

pitch of a motorcycle, iceberg hues in clouds;
the gravel courtyard's a midnight garden,

as in Japan, raked to resemble ocean waves
in moonlight, whirlpool eddies, circular ripplesó

and nothing is quite what it appears to be.
When I unlatch the screen door, a snake

slides under the weathered decking; I spot
the jagged hole edged with glass where a burglar

reached through the window, but no one
marks the poplars darker with thunder and rain.

In moonlight I watch the whirlpool hues
of clouds drift over our courtyard, adobe walls,

and gate, and, though there is no loon,
a loon calls out over the yard, over the water.


Arthur Sze

FIELD

Spring 2013


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