Of all the days that swoop low over the water
to pluck a morsel from beneath the surface
and continue in a smooth glide, rising gradually
to perch on a branch and lob a cry into the steaming sunlight
to mingle with the gurgle of the river;
of all these, there is only the one day
of sun sweltering long over the bayou,
the one whose morning we rise exuberantly to greet,
the same to whose midnight pillow
we relinquish our gray hairs with relief,
the only day when gnats tie their ravening knots
in the sticky air, swooping low over the pool
where tasty little fishes rise to greet them.

August 16, 1997

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