The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Wednesday and Brookside in May

Ribbon Snake Asleep In The Sun
By Mary Oliver

I come upon him and he is
startled; he glides
to the rock's rim; he wheels, setting in motion
the stripes of his body, yet not going
anywhere. And though the books say
it can't be done, since his eyes are set
too far apart in the narrow skull, I'm not
lying when I say that he lifts his face and looks

into my eyes and I look back until
we are both staring hard
at each other. He wants to know
just where in this bright, blue-faced world
he might be safe. He wants to go on with the
flow of his life. Then he straightens
his shining back and drops

from the rocks and rockets through
the tangle of weeds, sliding, as he goes, over
my bare foot. Then it vanishes
into the shade and the grass, down to
some slubby stream, having
startled me in return. But this is a
small matter. What I would speak of, rather,
is the weightless string of his actually soft and
nervous body; the nameless stars of its eyes.


We had another gorgeous day on Tuesday, so after a morning of rearranging stuff, we had an early lunch and went to Brookside Gardens. There are still some azaleas, though the tulips have given way for irises and the first roses, and half of the conservatory is closed to set up for the butterfly exhibit, but there are at least two families of goslings and we also saw a Baltimore oriole, two green herons, three snakes, three snapping turtles, several red-winged blackbirds, lots of frogs and painted turtles, and many fish:









We stopped at Mom's Organic Market and Giant on the way home for necessities for us and the cats, had homemade veggie beef & peppers and chick'n satay, then watched the Tuesday lineup: The Flash, where everyone has taken a stupid pill so ugh Iris get on a bus out of town already, then Genius, where it's not fair to hold actual history against anyone is it, and finally Agents of SHIELD, where I have no idea why I'm still watching because Fatal Attraction was sexist enough the first time around. Now, yay, the Colbert Reunion!

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