background image
the heat lightning 265
And on a distant county road
the sun bangs for an instant
on a windshield, fl ashing
like a signal; no reply.
A big butterfl y, strongly
constructed, yellow with black
ribbing and trim, works the air
between the house and trees,
disappearing from time to time
around the corner of the house
or inside one of the trees,
reappearing abruptly.
I come out after breakfast
every day, and sit writing
in the morning shade. Clear hours!
Butterfl y's in the foreground
frequently; tall dusty weeds
by the road; small house, trees, fi elds,
in the middle distance; then
the pale, vapory mountains.
If I look up from my page
the butterfl y is often
the one moving thing in sight.
I watch him rise at the end
of a glide with a broken,
tottering movement, working
his way up to a high bough
then not alighting, but merely
poising in the air above it
and veering briskly off . Well,
he's not after anything.
A kind of extract of this
place, having worked free, he stays;