The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Friday and Longwood Color

The Origin of Order
By Pattiann Rogers

Stellar dust has settled.
It is green underwater now in the leaves
Of the yellow crowfoot. Its vacancies are gathered together
Under pine litter as emerging flower of the pink arbutus.
It has gained the power to make itself again
In the bone-filled egg of osprey and teal.

One could say this toothpick grasshopper
Is a cloud of decayed nebula congealed and perching
On his female mating. The tortoise beetle,
Leaving the stripped veins of morning glory vines
Like licked bones, is a straw-colored swirl
Of clever gases.

At this moment there are dead stars seeing
Themselves as marsh and forest in the eyes
Of muskrat and shrew, disintegrated suns
Making songs all night long in the throats
Of crawfish frogs, in the rubbings and gratings
Of the red-legged locust. There are spirits of orbiting
Rock in the shells of pointed winkles
And apple snails, ghosts of extinct comets caught
In the leap of darting hare and bobcat, revolutions
Of rushing stone contained in the sound of these words.

The paths of the Pleiades and Coma clusters
Have been compelled to mathematics by the mind
Contemplating the nature of itself
In the motions of stars. The patterns
Of any starry summer night might be identical
To the summer heavens circling inside the skull.
I can feel time speeding now in all directions
Deeper and deeper into the black oblivion
Of the electrons directly behind my eyes.

Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.


I had a pretty good Thursday -- I wasn't sick, for starters -- but Adam had a truly great Thursday. My mother took us to Bagel City for lunch, where she and Daniel had tuna, Adam had a veggie melt, and I had walnut raisin cream cheese on a cinnamon raisin bagel, which is one of my favorite things; then we went to the violin shop for the final inspection before we own the instrument we've been renting for the past few years, and the shop offered to rehair the bow for free since they'd have done it under the rental warranty if we'd come in a couple of weeks earlier. So we left the violin there and came home, at which point Adam's best friend from first through third grades, who had moved back to Venezuela with his family five years ago, dropped by -- Adam had known he was in the U.S. because he'd left a message on Facebook. On Friday they are going to the pool together along with Adam's good friend Daniel W who is also from Venezuela.

As if that wasn't enough good news, a producer from TruTV wrote to Adam about a video he had made of Daniel W being a klutz on rollerblades, asking if he'd let them use it on an America's Funniest Videos-type show called It Only Hurts When I Laugh. She needs my permission too since he's underage. So even though he had some technical problems with a video he was working on today (microphone failure, video editing problems), he gets to have fun with his friends on Friday and Breakfast with the Penguins is on Saturday. Daniel played video games with them in the afternoon and went in the evening to work with vertigo66's husband on his summer project, which he enjoys, so it was a good day for everyone.

In the evening while Daniel was out, the rest of us watched The Attenborough Collection's "Elephant: Spy in the Herd" and Nature's "Andes: The Dragon's Back," both of which were wonderful -- the former followed an African elephant herd and demonstrated that elephants apparently grieve for their dead, the latter showed all the species that live in the Andes from penguins to foxes to guanacos to little bunny-like rodents. I loved seeing Humboldt penguins running through a rainforest making vuvuzela noises. It was over 90 degrees on Thursday and is supposed to be even hotter Friday through Sunday, so here are some photos of the outdoor flowers at the equally warm Longwood Gardens last Sunday, a more green palette than the blossoms of spring and leaves of fall:


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