Pete, floating in the green-gold rippling
surface of Pitman Creek, seen
As a mussel might, from between
bottom gravels, undulating with
Interlacing rings of light, cuts the white
Orb of the sun with a man-shape of black.
From the eye of the red-tail hawk
He spies as he floats on his back,
He’s copper on jade, laced with curlicues
Of fragrant ink, that thicken to a thatch
above the sex that attracts a second glance
of appreciation if the sight should strike
a raptor’s eye like mine.
On the dark-centered orbs of his own,
The blue and white flocks of summer
Cumulous drift in reflection, gauging distance
And height without really caring, because swimming
Is flight in thought. With one muscled sweep
Of log-thick arms, and a long-toed kick
He slips across the divide
Between earth and sky, hearing the odd loud
Warble of breathing,
ears just beneath the water.
There must be some such summer moment
In every sensual life, when the high dome
Of honeysuckle encloses the perfect
Beauty of the body’s repose, exactly at the center
Of a floating world, a bead
On the thread of a kingfisher’s
Dipping flight, flashing, as minnows
Roll to flash, radiance leaping up
To pierce the primal light.