Collected Poems of John Holmes
Holmes, John A., Jr.
This week in April the high winds bustle the forsythia.
Every bush is about to be up and off, a fallen cloud
Of yellow, all the more butter-gold in the thin green
Of land-locked grass. But my youngest sister dead.
It is three months now. Indoors and out, all stirs,
Children grow in grace and inches, as history is made.
Even I go forward, and family letters read like novels
Or unguessable newspapers. But my youngest sister is dead.
Gutters are choked with old leaf, the skies at sunset wild
With steel-blue streak and drab, but next day a flood
Cleans the stone, and sight is window-clean every way.
The world, world changes. But my youngest sister is dead.
What will be said of her when no one remembers her voice,
After torrents of August and snow and springs by decade?
The golden bushes will flower, and wind take some brother's
Breath again, saying, But my youngest sister is dead.