amanda field | words

That Year

You succumbed to translucence in springtime
while we described your disappearance as calamity.

First smoke over a field of clover, then you went farther
to where no light catches, a memory outside of light,

the sun left to cast its vigor on slow-falling dust motes
circling furiously with an upswing of the hand.

September brought the Santa Ana winds and my birthday.
You were already a greenhouse gas when I turned ten,

candles burning down in the store-bought cake,
frosting, thick and physical, overwrought with sugar.

ZYZZYVA (#73, Spring 2005)