I miss the kind of friend whose vices
won't retreat in middle age;
I miss weather in a supporting role,
mayflies and the cold pool.
And the madness of the hill towns,
creamed chicken and cornbread
and underneath these, pain's strange, wiry varietyŚ
I could be something more, more serious.
At times I even miss the city's never-ending
hours, autocratic, always possible to be
turned out of an apartment by the heat
and so to wander aimlessly, the avenues at night.
Even birds can find the sanctuary set aside for them.
Work of the smallest lives can change
sugar into alcohol or leaven bread.
A mustard grain can grow into the greatest
shrub, to give the wicked shade.