This time of year makes it hard
to believe in randomness.
Maples flame up, then out,
visible symmetry undressed

as roots-in-air mirrors.  That blood
moon too; imagine it even older,
chokecherry-small, earth an egg,
the sun a perfect boulder.

What precision engineering
to have them appear in eclipse
as same-sized gems—garnet, azurite,
gold—a celestial necklace.

No refuting earth-embedded stars:
trapped in apples, sand dollars, roses,
marsh flowers, morning glories,
DaVinci’s five-pointed poses;

or spirals—Milky Way, snail shell,
fiddlehead, hurricane, helix
and, most fortunate of all, the swirl
flinging seekers together—a vortex

above an English farmhouse, where
next to a barley field, unplowed,
an Ohioan and Californian first collided.
Branches applauded, stars bowed.


A graduate of the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA Poetry Program, David Sloan teaches at Maine Coast Waldorf High School in New Gloucester.  His debut poetry collection—The Irresistible In-Between—was published by Deerbrook Editions in 2013.  His poetry has appeared in The Café Review, Chiron Review, Innisfree, Lascaux Review, Naugatuck River Review, New Millenium Writings and Passager, among others. He received the 2012 Betsy Sholl Award, Maine Literary awards in 2012 and 2016, The Margaret F. Tripp Poetry Award, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He is currently enjoying life’s latest delight—grandfatherhood!

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